NAB to challenge Nawaz Sharif’s acquittal in Flagship reference

NAB to challenge Nawaz Sharif’s acquittal in Flagship reference
Caption:   photo twitter

Islamabad (Staff Report): The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided to file petition against former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s acquittal in Flagship corruption reference.

The decision was taken in meeting chaired by anti-graft body's chairman Justice (R) Javed Iqbal chaired. The chairman directed NAB's legal team to timely file an appeal against the verdict with solid evidences and full preparation.

An accountability court on Monday acquitted Nawaz in Flagship reference, while awarded 7-year jail and slapped a fine of Rs1.5 billion in Al-Azizia Steel Mills corruption case.

After listening to the verdict, Nawaz had appealed the court to shift him to Kot Lakhpat prison in Lahore instead of Adiala jail, Rawalpindi.

Judge Arshad Malik accepted Nawaz’s request despite NAB's objection.

On Tuesday, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) brought Nawaz to Lahore via a special charter flight from Nur Khan Airbase.

According to sources, a B-class room furnished with a TV set, bed, blanket, heater, chair and a table has been allotted to Nawaz at Kot Lakhpat Jail. The former premier has been provided with a helper and will also be allowed food from home.

Nawaz and his brother, PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif, will share the same compound but different rooms at Kot Lakhpat prison, they said.

The judge in his 131-page judgment in Al-Azizia corruption reference concluded that the prosecution (NAB) successfully established all the ingredients of the offence of corruption and corrupt practices against Nawaz Sharif as defined under section 9 (a) (v) of the NAO 1999 read  with section 14 (c).

“Thereof as per the charge  framed for holding and being true and real beneficial owner of the assets, the Al Azizia Steel Company Limited (ASCL), the Hill Metal Establishment (HME) and related remittances, beyond his known sources of income as he failed to establish contrary thereto.”

The order said Nawaz Sharif and his sons – Hussain and Hassan – are very closely related and members of a tightly knit, monolithic, patriarchal family with close association and jointly held financial business interests. There is nothing on record to suggest that there is any hostility between the three.

It also held that claim of Sharif that he has no beneficial interest or share in ASCL is unsubstantiated, false and fabricated and his son Hussain Nawaz was never the exclusive nor real and beneficial owner.