Published: Fri, December 28, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

Nawaz’s legal team to challenge Al-Azizia verdict

Nawaz’s legal team to challenge Al-Azizia verdict

An accountability court sentenced former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to seven years in prison on corruption charges on Monday, giving fresh impetus to allegations of the judiciary's political bias.

After reserving the decision last week, Accountability Court II Judge Muhammad Arshad Malik announced the verdict.

The court acquitted him in the case of Flagship Investments, but in the other cases, he was fined the equivalent of $25 million. However, there was not enough evidence in the Flagship Investment reference. Nawaz Sharif was named as the central suspect for the off-shore company in Dubai, known as Capital FZE.

Sharif being jailed has been cited by many as another example of the all-powerful military sidelining a popular politician who took them on.

Sharif was to be shifted from Rawalpindi's Adiala Jail to Lahore's Kot Lakhpat jail.

The court's verdict is yet another test for the Sharif family. He has the option to challenge the verdict against him.

In July, Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz were convicted in absentia in the Avenfield case by the accountability court.

Security around the Judicial Complex in Islamabad was increased ahead of the verdict, with at least 1,400 personnel deployed in and around the court premises.

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After the leak of this information, the Supreme court of Pakistan in July 2017 was removed Sharif from office of the Prime Minister of the country, and National Bureau of accountability, together with the British law enforcement began to look for his London flat. If Maryam becomes actively engaged in politics again, the PML-N still has a support base and the street power necessary to weaken the government. Tear gas and baton-charge was used to disperse the protesters.

Shortly before the announcement of the verdict, clashes erupted between supporters of Sharif and police in Islamabad. "I do not have any sort of fear; my conscience is clear", he had said before the judgement, according to PTI.

He also said that there was no evidence against him.

Responding to a query during the program about PPP's Sherry Rehman's statement of "Dama Dum Mast Qalandar, Mr Vawda said he respects Sherry Rehman, " I guess she must be talking about 'Dama Dum Mast Qalandar" in Christmas party. Hamza Shehbaz, Shehbaz Sharif's son and the opposition leader in Punjab Assembly, is also facing inquiries in connection with multiple corruption cases.

The court found the three-time prime minister was unable to prove the source of income for the ownership of a steel mill in Saudi Arabia, Geo News reported.

His sons, Hassan and Hussain, were declared absconders.

Sharif has been prime minister three times but power has been a rough ride.

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