Vol. 5 Num 729 Fri. June 16, 2006  

Chilavert cleared of jail sentence

A French appeals court on Wednesday dismissed a six-month suspended jail sentence against top-scoring goalkeeper Jose Luis Chilavert, over a false document used in a compensation wrangle with his former club Strasbourg.

The outspoken Paraguayan ex-international was convicted last July after the club took legal action against his claims it reneged on an extra 2.4 million euros (3 million dollars) of a 4.4 million euro (5.5 million dollars) fee he said he was promised.

However, the Paris appeals court on Wednesday ruled that uncertainty surrounded about how the document used to back up the player's claims was made.

The court also quashed the court order requiring Chilavert, now 40, pay 10,000 euros (12,600 dollars) damages to the Strasbourg club plus a symbolic sum of one euro to club president Patrick Proisy.

One of the game's leading free-kick specialists, Chilavert scored 62 goals as a professional player, making him the highest-scoring professional goalkeeper of all time.

Strasbourg recruited the controversial keeper in 2000, but he was sacked after a stormy two seasons in September 2002 for refusing to play a French league match against Lille.