Accountability court resumes hearing into NAB reference against Nawaz Sharif

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Nawaz Sharif PML-N

ISLAMABAD: An accountability court here on Wednesday resumed hearing into Al-Azizia Steel mills’ graft reference against former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif filed by National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in compliance of the Supreme Court’s July 28 verdict.
Judge Mohammad Bashir is conducting the trial proceedings.
NAB witness Tayyab Ahmed will continue testifying against the former premier. Subsequently, Sharif’s counsel Advocate Khawaja Haris will cross-examine the witnesses after they get their statements recorded against Sharifs.
Witness Ahmed, an employee of a private bank, on Tuesday informed the judge that Maryam received a cheque of Rs12 million on June 13, 2015, Rs 28.8 million on November 15, 2015 and Rs19.5 million on August 14, 2016.
In absence of ex-PM Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz, they are being represented by their pleaders Zafir Khan Tareen and Jahangir Jadoon respectively.
At the last hearing on Tuesday, the NAB court recorded the statements of more witnesses in the references filed against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and members of his family by the anti-graft body.
Witnesses – Umer Daraz and Mukhtar – recorded their statements in the Avenfield and other references and were cross-examined by the defense lawyer.
Meanwhile, the former prime minister’s son-in-law, retired Captain Safdar, moved an application seeking exemption from personal appearance for 15 days. The court is yet to announce its verdict on his request.
A day earlier, the accountability judge granted the request of the former prime minister to change his period of exemption from personal appearance, whereas dismissed the same plea of his daughter Maryam Nawaz.
The court also recorded the statement of prosecution witness Malik Tayyab Ahmad, an employee of a private commercial bank. He submitted the details of accounts and transactions statements of Sharif.
Maryam and her husband Captain (retd) Safdar have been named in a single corruption reference pertaining to the Sharif family’s London properties. Whereas, Sharif and his two sons – Hassan and Hussain – have been nominated in three references related to the London flats, Al-Aziza Steel Mills and Hill Metals Establishment.
The anti-corruption watchdog has nominated Sharif and his two sons – Hasan and Hussain Nawaz – in two references regarding the Aziza Steel Mills, Hill Metals Establishment, and nearly dozen other companies owned by the Sharif family.
Ousted PM Sharif could face lifetime disqualification from holding a public office including the freezing of bank accounts, besides 14 years imprisonment on conviction in the references.

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