Hansie Cronje, the disgraced former South African cricket captain, has denied claims he withheld information about financial transactions from forensic auditors at Deloitte & Touche.
Cronje held a press conference in Bloemfontein today during which he claimed to have provided D&T with complete records of all his bank transactions during his time as captain of the national cricket team.
He described a UK press report on the firm’s findings a ‘blatant lie’ and threatened to sue any newspapers or journalist who wrote defamatory articles against him.
The story claimed D&T had unearthed 120 payments totalling Pounds 900,000 deposited into 19 accounts, two of which were held at Natwest Bank and Merryl Lynch in the UK. The payments which, could not immediately be identified by investigators as salary, endorsements or other declared income, were allegedly made while Cronje was captain between 1995 and 2000.
The report, ordered by the King Commission – the government body set up to investigate allegations of match-fixing in South African cricket – was never completed due to repeated legal challenges from Cronje’s lawyers, but results were supposedly leaked.
Yesterday Cronje told a Johannesburg talk radio station: ‘I’ve disclosed everything I know. If you want to accuse me of accepting money from bookmakers, then, yes, I’m guilty. But if you say I’m covering things up, then that’s a lie.
‘On 5 February I received a number of queries from the auditors,’ said Cronje. ‘And on 9 February the King commission closed down. That’s the last I heard from them.’
Cronje told the King Commission last year that he had received about Pounds 85,000 from gamblers and bookmakers.
He said the commission had not asked him to provide records of every bank transaction he had ever made, only those relating to his tenure as national captain. He also denied ever having received a copy of the forensic audit during the hearings.
Justice Edward King, head of the King Commission, asked D&T to conduct a forensic audit of Cronje to establish his true financial position.
D&T South Africa declined to comment on the work it had done on Cronje.