Ben Stokes NOT GUILTY: England cricketer cleared of affray

Ross Houston
August 14, 2018

"Now that the legal proceedings have concluded, the disciplinary process for Ben Stokes and Alex Hales can be scheduled by the Cricket Discipline Commission [CDC]", said the European Central Bank in a statement.

After being refused entry to the Mbargo nightclub, the cricketer had abused the doorman and then mocked two openly gay men, the court was told.

During the trial, Stokes was alleged to have lied to the jury, mimicked and bullied two men on account of their homosexuality and acted like a football hooligan.

He said he had not been drunk but admitted he could not remember what the had been said.

"I'm delighted for him, and hopefully we can see him back in an England shirt very, very soon because we saw the impact that he had at Edgbaston only a couple of weeks ago in the first Test match", Bairstow told Sky Sports.

He said he was moved to intervene in the situation, telling Ali and Hale to "leave it out - you shouldn't be taking the piss because they're gay".

"I would have to perceive a significant threat to do that". Ali was alleged to have used an upturned bottle in the early moments of the fracas, while CCTV footage showed Hale running towards the incident with an iron bar ripped from a traffic sign.

"I noticed that they both had glass bottles in their hands".

"We knew that they were prepared to use weapons that could do serious injury and I feared they could have other weapons with them".

Stokes is accused of knocking Ali to the floor, with fellow cricketer Hales then apparently kicking his head and stamping on him as he lay on the ground. He told police: "Because he was abusing my two friends for being gay".

Ali, an emergency services worker, suffered a fractured eye socket, while Mr Hale, a former soldier, was left with concussion after both were punched by the cricketer in the brawl.

Ali, 28, was found not guilty of affray while Hale was acquitted of the same charge part way through the trial at Bristol Crown Court.

Stokes, of Stockton Road, Castle Eden, Durham, and Ali, of Forest Road, Bristol, each deny one count of affray.

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