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SC accepts NAB appeals against Nawaz, Maryam

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Monday accepted for hearing appeals filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) challenging the Islamabad High Court (IHC) verdict that suspended the prison terms of former premier Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and her spouse Capt (retd) Safdar. 

A three-judge bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, declared the appeals maintainable for hearing.

The chief justice remarked the bench would determine whether or not to constitute a larger bench to hear the matter. The question is that the matter doesn’t pertain to just bail but the suspension of the sentences as well, he said, adding that it had to see whether the suspension of sentences affected the merits of the case.

The bench declined to grant leave to appeal against the IHC verdict at this juncture and adjourned the hearing till December 12.

On September 19, 2018 the IHC bench had suspended the prison terms of Sharif family members in the Avenfield reference, releasing them on bail.

NAB special prosecutor Akram Qureshi contended in the appeals that the high court has failed to appreciate that through its order, it had seriously prejudiced the case of the prosecution by holding that the trial court judgement suffered from obvious and glaring defects and infirmities and that the convictions and sentences handed down to the accused might not be sustained ultimately.

He pleaded with the top court to overturn the IHC order and restore the sentences awarded to Nawaz Sharif, his daughter and her spouse.

The court was further requested to cancel the bail granted to all the accused in the corruption reference by the high court.

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