Wife-beater spared jail over cricket contract claim to face sentence review
A man spared jail for beating his wife after telling a court he would lose an offer to play professional cricket is to have his sentence reviewed.
Mustafa Bashir, 34, was given a suspended sentence at Manchester Crown Court for assaulting Fakhara Karim.
Judge Richard Mansell QC has been heavily criticised by domestic abuse campaigners after he reportedly said Miss Karim was not vulnerable because she was a graduate.
And the judge was told that if Bashir was spared custody he would be employed as a professional player by Leicestershire County Cricket Club.
But the club later said this claim was "wholly false".
Now Judge Mansell has ordered Bashir's sentence to be reviewed at Manchester Crown Court on Friday.
Bashir was said to have beaten his wife with a cricket bat and forced her to drink bleach.
He was given an 18-month sentence, suspended for two years, after admitting assault occasioning actual bodily harm, assault by beating, destroying or damaging property and using a destructive substance with intent to maim.
He was ordered to attend a Building Better Relationships Programme and a restraining order was imposed indefinitely.
But he was spared jail after his lawyers claimed in mitigation that he would lose the offer of a professional contract to play cricket with Leicestershire.
The club later contacted the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to deny any such offer.
Leicestershire CCC chief executive Wasim Khan said: "Leicestershire CCC are appalled that Bashir could have invented a job offer from the club in order, it would seem, to evade a prison sentence.
"The club are actively involved in the fight against domestic abuse and had already arranged a Bowling Out Domestic Violence cricket match in September in support of the White Ribbon Campaign, set up to tackle domestic violence.
"So Bashir's claim was deeply disturbing for the club and we will continue to do what we can to support the authorities bring about justice."
The CPS then said it was aware of "recent developments" and was considering options.
Bashir's case also prompted criticism of the judge by domestic violence campaigners and female MPs after Judge Mansell reportedly said he was not convinced that Miss Karim was a vulnerable person because she was "plainly intelligent", having graduated from university with a 2:1, and had a network of friends.
Judge Mansell has ordered another hearing at 11am on Friday to review the sentence.
CPS guidance states a sentence can be reviewed under the "Slip Rule" of section 155 Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000.
This gives courts the power to alter a sentence or other order made by the judge within 56 days of the date on which it was made.
One reason for altering the sentence is that further information relevant to the sentence has become available to the court, the guidance states.