NAB to shift Nawaz, Maryam to Adiala Jail through helicopter
ISLAMABAD: Finalizing strategy to make high-profile arrests following the court orders in Avenfield case, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided to take into custody former premier Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz and move them via helicopter to Adiala Jail as they land at the Lahore airport on July 13.
According to sources, the accountability watchdog also decided that the two Sharif family members won’t be allowed to come out of the jet after their plane touches down the Lahore airport.
Director General NAB Lahore, Shehzad Saleem, through his letter, requested the NAB chairman to provide helicopter for transferring the two high-profile political figures. The letter states that any rally on the day could create difficulties in arresting the top two PML-N figures.
The NAB fears that law and order situation in the Punjab capital may worsen on July 13 due to N-League rally.
Meanwhile, at least 24 spots in Lahore have been declared sensitive for security reasons ahead of the arrival of convicted Sharifs. A plan has also been devise to deploy 2,500 security personnel on the day Nawaz returns to Pakistan.
On July 6, the accountability court sentenced former premier Nawaz Sharif to a total of 10 years in prison and directed him to pay a fine of £8 million after finding him guilty on different charges in the Avenfield properties case.
Judge Muhammad Bashir found Mr. Sharif guilty of accumulating assets beyond his known sources of income.
He handed out seven-year imprisonment to the former premier’s daughter Maryam Nawaz and a fine of £2 million. She has been awarded an additional one year’s imprisonment on charges of using Calibri font to fabricate Avenfield properties trust deeds.
Whereas, her husband Captain retired Safdar has been awarded one year’s jail term.
Moreover, the judge ordered confiscation of the Sharif family’s London properties in question in the case.
Four members of the Sharif family ─ Nawaz, Maryam, Hasan and Hussain ─ who have been named in the case – are in London, while Captain Safdar is in Pakistan, but didn’t appear in court to hear the verdict.
The judge earlier rejected an application filed by the former prime minister seeking a seven-day postponement of the verdict.
What is the Avenfield case?
The Avenfield reference is among four corruption references filed against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his three children and former finance minister Ishaq Dar in compliance with the July 2017 Supreme Court verdict in the Panama Papers case.
On July 28, the apex court disqualified Mr. Sharif in a unanimous verdict, thus cutting short his third stint in power.
The court directed the anti-graft watchdog to file references against the former premier and members of his family in the wake of the Panama Joint Investigation Team (JIT) report leveling serious corruption allegations against them.
Subsequently, three references were filed against Sharifs, which pertained to the Al-Azizia Steel Mills and Hill Metal Establishment, Flagship Investment Ltd, and Avenfield properties of London.
Nawaz sharif and his two sons – Hussain and Hasan – have been named in all three references whereas his daughter Maryam and son-in-law Capt. Safdar have been nominated in the Avenfield reference only.
As per Avenfield Properties reference, Sharif, his brood and his son-in-law had purchased four flats in Park Lane, UK, without legitimate financial means. However, the former premier and his family members have consistently claimed that the apartments were purchased with legal means.