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NAB arrests capt (retd) Safdar in Rawalpindi

RAWALPINDI: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s son-in-law captain (retd) Safdar, who was convicted by an accountability court in the Avenfield properties reference, has been arrested in Rawalpindi on Sunday, ARY News reported.

He showed up at a rally in Rawalpindi a day after NAB officials conducted raids in Abbottabad and Mansehra districts to arrest him, he reached Rawalpindi and was seen addressing a gathering of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) workers.

The accused was transported to NAB office, Rawalpindi. Elite forces and Rangers personnel have been deployed in and around the premises of the office along officers of the district administration.

All the ways leading to the NAB office have been sealed and traffic from Melody to Lal Masjid has been diverted to G-6-1-2.

ARY News correspondent Zulqarnain Haider said Safdar was under NAB’s custody. He said, earlier, he had requested the accountability institution’s officials to let him reach the nearby PML-N office along the rally where he would formally surrender.

The ARY News correspondent said NAB officials escorted him up to the PML-N office in the huge public rally as participants of the rally obstructed them from formal arrest.

On Friday, Sharif was awarded 10 years in prison, while his daughter Maryam Nawaz and her spouse Capt. Safdar were handed seven years’ and one year’s prison term, respectively.

Judge Muhammad Bashir ordered forfeiture of their properties in the Avenfield Apartments and Park Lane of London. He imposed a fine of £8 million (approximately Rs1,292m) on the former premier and £2 million (approximately Rs323m) on his daughter.

Besides, three convicts were awarded an additional one-year imprisonment, which will run concurrently for not cooperating with the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

According to the verdict, the prosecution failed to establish the charge of corrupt practices against them.

Sharif’s two sons – Hussain and Hassan Nawaz – were declared fugitives and warrants for their arrest were issued for staying away from the trial proceedings.

After their conviction, Maryam and her spouse couldn’t contest the upcoming polls. Capt Safdar was to contest on a national and provincial assembly seats in Mansehra, while Maryam from a national and provincial assembly seat in Lahore.

Members of the Sharif family have decided to appeal against the verdict through Nawaz’s lawyer Khawaja Haris.

Haris is preparing the appeals in accordance with the judgment passed.

Legal experts predict that if the convicted do not return in the next ten days, obtaining relief will be difficult.

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