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NAB Court Adjourns Hearing Against Sharifs Till August 03

Islamabad (August 01, 2018): Accountability Court hearing the Al Azizia and Flagship References against Sharif Family adjourned the hearing without any proceedings today till August 03.

Judge Muhammad Bashir adjourned the hearing due to under trial plea of Sharif family in Islamabad High Court.

Earlier on July 30, the Accountability Court-I Judge Mohammad Bashir adjourned the hearing of the Al Azizia and Flagship corruption references against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif till August 01 (today).

As the hearing went underway, the court inquired into the presence of Nawaz’s counsel Khawaja Haris. His colleague then informed the court that the counsel is on his way.

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Earlier on, hearing of the Al-Azizia Reference, filed by NAB on the directions of the Supreme Court resumed in the accountability court of Judge Muhammad Bashir against Sharif Family.

Joint Investigation Team (JIT) head and prosecution’s main witness Wajid Zia said he did not come across any document during the investigation which showed that former prime minister Nawaz Sharif is the owner of Al-Azizia Steel Mills.

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As per the bank statement, Nawaz’s son Hussain Nawaz sent him an amount worth US$1.1 million as a ‘gift’ from July 5, 2010, to June 30, 2011. “It is true that the dollars sent to Nawaz were a gift from his son,” Zia remarked.

Nawaz should have declared the amount in the wealth statement for 2010-2011, Zia added.

The National Accountability Bureau prosecutor Wasiq Malik remarked that there is no need to compare the bank statement with tax record, adding “our case is different”.Zia, a Federal Investigation Agency additional director, headed the Panama case Joint Investigation Team (JIT) that probed the Sharif family’s assets last year.

Background Of The Case

The trial against the Sharif family had commenced on September 14, 2017 after NAB filed the Avenfield, Al Azizia and Flagship references.

On July 6, after four extensions in the original six-month deadline to conclude all three cases, the court announced its verdict in the Avenfield reference.

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Nawaz was sentenced to a total of 11 years in prison and slapped a £8 million fine (Rs1.3 billion) while Maryam was sentenced to eight years with a £2 million fine (Rs335 million). Moreover, Maryam’s husband, Capt (retd) Safdar, was sentenced to one year in prison.

Nawaz and his sons, Hussain and Hasan, are accused in all three references whereas Maryam and Safdar were accused in the Avenfield reference only.

The two brothers, based abroad, have been absconding since the proceedings began last year and were declared proclaimed offenders by the court.

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