STEPHEN Lee suffered new setbacks on Thursday during his appeal against a 12-year ban and £40,000 costs from seven counts of match-fixing.
Edwin Glasgow QC, brought in to hear the appeal for independent body Sports Resolutions, awarded another £30,000 costs against the 39-year-old.
The barrister had earlier thrown out the first part of Lee’s appeal in which he alleged bias against Adam Lewis QC, who gave the original verdict and handed down the sentence.
Lee had tried to argue that the fact Lewis had also done work for Leyton Orient Football Club, owned by World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn, was unfair.
But according to a World Professional Billiards and Snooker statement Glasgow claimed those allegations were “misconceived”.
And the WPBSA statement also claimed the reason for Glasgow now stepping down for the rest of the process is that he had formed “an unfavourable impression of Lee’s truthfulness”.
That revelation will now see a third QC used in the process hear the rest of the appeal.
As things stand today Lee now has costs awards totalling £70,000 against him – but is still appealing against the original £40,000.
Given sensitivity over bias, Glasgow offered to step aside for the remaining part of the appeal given the view he had formed, an offer accepted by Lee’s legal representatives.
Former world No5 Lee still protests his innocence and plans to continue with the second part of his appeal – against the convictions, sentence and original costs award.
Lee was contacted last night but was unavailable to provide any comment, and the offices of his Southampton-based solicitors were closed when called. His barrister has been working pro bono, or for no fee, on the appeal.
A new chair of the appeals committee has already been put forward – but though accepted by the WPBSA is yet to be agreed upon by Lee’s camp.
The full WPBSA statement read: “Edwin Glasgow QC and Peter Stockwell, who formed the Appeals Committee to hear the first part of Stephen Lee's appeal against his conviction for seven counts of match fixing, have on request of those representing Mr Lee recused themselves from hearing the remainder of the appeal.
“The Appeals Committee made the offer to both parties to recuse themselves. The reason for this was that in their decision to dismiss the first part of the appeal they had formed an unfavourable impression of Mr Lee's truthfulness as a witness of fact on a critical issue.
“In addition to dismissing the first part of the appeal, the Appeals Committee concluded that the appropriate order in this case is that Mr Lee should pay a contribution of £30,000 towards the legal costs incurred by the WPBSA in successfully resisting the appeal insofar as it was based on what was found to be misconceived allegations of apparent bias.
“Sport Resolutions UK have nominated a new chair for the Appeals Committee in order that the remainder of the appeal can be heard. The nominee has been accepted by the WPBSA and we are keen for the remainder of the appeal to be dealt with as soon as possible.”