Bookie forced Arbaaz Khan to make appearances at public events: Police


THANE: Actor Arbaaz Khan has admitted to police that he used to place bets on cricket matches with the help of bookie Sonu Jalan, the alleged kingpin of the IPL scam, said inspector Pradeep Sharma.

Khan, who was named by Jalan during questioning, recorded his statement on Saturday. He said that no money changed hands and whenever he lost, Jalan blackmailed him to appear at public events, said inspector Sharma. Khan is likely to be made a witness in the case.

Actor Arbaaz Khan arrived at the anti-extortion cell office around 11am. He was at the office for nearly five hours. Jalan and Khan were brought face to face, said Sharma.

The inspector told TOI that Khan had confessed to having placed the bets through Jalan, who was introduced to him by a common friend seven years ago. “Earlier, Khan placed small bets just for fun and there was no monetary transaction between him and Jalan,” said an officer from the department.

Police said Khan has told them that Jalan never showed him any accounts and would give him special treatment.

“Though Jalan kept records of Khan’s wins and losses, no money changed hands. It was only after a spate of losses that there was an argument between the actor and Jalan. After this, Jalan started harassing him to accompany him to various events like local Ganesh mandals and Holi festivities so that he could flaunt his Bollywood connections and gather more clients,” added the officer.

Jalan would also accompany Khan to IPL matches and use the opportunity to make contacts, said a source. As his family disapproved of betting, Khan reportedly snapped contact with Jalan couple of months ago. “Khan has told us that since he cut off contact with Jalan, the latter had been blackmailing him to resume betting,” the officer added.

Speaking to media outlets, Khan said, “I had come to record my statement and I will continue to cooperate with the investigation.” Police said they may summon Khan again if needed. Meanwhile, two more names — a bookie, Dilip, and a producer — have cropped up. Police refused to divulge details about the producer.

On Saturday, Jalan’s police custody was extended till Thursday. “This is nothing but a media trial,” Defence counsel Sagar Kadam said.

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