Ex-Nepal captain Lamichhane held at Kathmandu airport

KATHMANDU, Oct 6: Nepal cricketer Sandeep Lamichhane was taken into custody upon landing at the Tribhuvan International Airport here on Thursday, following an arrest order that was issued last month, which accused him of raping a minor.
Lamichhane wrote on Facebook that he would “fully cooperate in all stages of the investigation and will fight a legal battle to prove my innocence”, before being arrested.
On September 8, a court in Nepal issued an arrest warrant for national cricket team captain Lamichhane after a 17-year-old girl alleged that he raped her in a hotel room in Kathmandu, police said.
When the warrant was issued, he was participating in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL), and was also Nepal cricket team’s captain.
According to the case filed at the Police Circle Gaushala here, Lamichhane, 22, allegedly took the girl to various places in Kathmandu and Bhaktapur for a visit on August 21 and raped her in a hotel in Kathmandu the same night.
Last month, the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) in a statement said it has suspended Lamichhane from the team to facilitate the investigation into the allegation labelled against him.
During a telephone conversation with the CAN officials, Lamichhane denied the charges, saying he is innocent, a media report here had said, quoting the CAN officials.
Lamichhane is Nepal’s most high-profile cricketer, and the first cricketer from Nepal to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL), when he made his debut for the Delhi Capitals franchise in 2018. The leg-spinner was a much sought-after cricketer in other major T20 leagues around the world. (PTI)

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