Sat, Apr 30, 2016 - Page 18 News List

Cricket player who tortured child maid looks for comeback

AFP, DHAKA

A Bangladeshi Test cricketer banned from the game after he was charged with torturing an 11-year-old girl he employed as a maid on Thursday apologized for his crime and appealed to be allowed to return to the game.

Shahadat Hossain, who has denied abusing the girl previously, apologized for what he called his “misdeed” and said he had made a mistake.

“I regret the unwarranted incident I was involved in and apologize to the whole nation,” he said in a statement in Bengali.

“For the sake of cricket and my livelihood, I want to return to cricket. I appeal to the nation, the BCB [Bangladesh Cricket Board], to allow me to return to cricket and correct my mistake. I apologize for my misdeed,” he said.

The 29-year-old pace bowler played 38 Tests and 51 one-day internationals before he was suspended from all forms of the game.

Bangladeshi police charged him and his wife, Nritto Shahadat, with assault and torture in December last year after the young girl was found crying on a roadside, her eyes bruised and swollen.

The couple went into hiding after police raided their house in September last year when the girl alleged they had beaten and tortured her.

Television footage showed her looking frail and thin and police said one of her hands had been burnt with a hot cooking implement.

He spent two months in custody after he handed himself in to police on Oct. 5 last year and has since been released on bail, as has his wife.

A judge has ordered that the couple face trial, and if convicted they face up to 14 years in jail.

However, a source said the couple and the girl’s family might come to a financial settlement that would see her withdraw the allegations.

In December last year, Shahadat told AFP in an interview that the allegations were false and had ruined his career.

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