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Pakistan's Mega Corruption Cases: Ex-Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif jailed for 7 years

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The Anti-Corruption Court in Islamabad on Monday (December 24) sentenced former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to seven years in prison for graft, while a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) constituted on the orders of the Supreme Court to investigate the multi-billion rupees fake-accounts scam, has held former President Asif Zardari responsible for the suspicious transactions.

Nawaz Sharif could not prove the source of income related to the ownership of a steel mill in Saudi Arabia, the anti-corruption court said in its ruling.

Nawaz has also been fined $ 25 million.

His two sons, Hassan and Hussain, who are not in Pakistan, were declared absconders by the court.

Nawaz Sharif was released on bail in September after a court in Islamabad suspended his 10-year sentence on corruption charges. He had been imprisoned two months earlier on charges of failing to disclose the source of his wealth.

This followed a long-running case related to his family's ownership of luxury properties in London.

Documents leaked from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca in 2016 had revealed that Nawaz Sharif's children had links to offshore companies, which were used to buy assets including the London apartments.

Nawaz Sharif removed from office in Panama Papers case

In July 2017, Pakistan's supreme court removed the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, from office in a unanimous verdict over corruption allegations.

The verdict by the five-member court capped a year of political controversy over corruption allegations unleashed by the 2016 Panama Papers leak.

The papers linked Sharif's children to the purchase of London property through offshore companies in the British Virgin Islands in the early 1990s. At that time the children were minors, and the purchase is assumed to have been made by Sharif.

In its ruling, the court referred all material gathered in the investigation to the court of the national accountability bureau, and recommended opening cases against Sharif, his three children, Mariam, Hassan and Hussain, his son-in-law Muhammad Safdar, and his finance minister Ishaq Dar.

Zardari, Omni Group responsible in fake-accounts scam

In another mega-corruption case, the JIT constituted on the orders of the Supreme Court to investigate the multi-billion rupees fake-accounts scam, has held former president Asif Zardari and his Omni Group responsible for the suspicious transactions.

The JIT Monday presented its probe report before the two-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar.

The JIT that has been investigating the fake-accounts case recommended a legal course against some 415 key individuals and around 172 entities allegedly involved in transactions of approximately Rs 220 billion through 104 fake accounts.

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Author and journalist. Author of Islamic Pakistan: Illusions & Reality; Islam in the Post-Cold War Era; Islam & Modernism; Islam & Muslims in the Post-9/11 America. Currently working as free lance journalist. Executive Editor of American (more...)
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