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Al-Azizia, Flagship References: Nawaz Sharif’s trial to be held in open court

ISLAMABAD (Muslim Times) – The federal cabinet on Tuesday decided to conduct hearing of Al-Azizia and Flagship references, filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in line with the Supreme Court judgement in Panama Papers case, in open court.

The decision was taken in a meeting in Islamabad on Tuesday.

The federal cabinet will tomorrow cancel the notification of the PML-N supremo’s jail trial.

Earlier, a day after ousted Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz were arrested in Lahore, the Ministry of Law and Justice said the trial in the remaining two corruption cases against the PML-N supremo and his family will be conducted in the Adiala jail in Rawalpindi, where the duo is reportedly currently lodged.

According to the notification: “In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (b) of section 16 of the National Accountability Ordinance, 1999 (XVIII of 1999), the federal government is please to specify the Central Jail Adiala, Rawalpindi, to be the place where the Accountability Court-I, Islamabad shall sit for trial of References No. 18/2017 and 19/2017 against Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and others.”

On July 6, the NAB sentenced Sharif, his daughter Maryam and son-in-law Captain (r) Mohammad Safdar to jail in the Avenfield properties case, one of the three corruption cases against Sharif following the Panama Papers scandal. The case was regarding the Sharifs owning four apartments in the posh Mayfair area in London.

The father-daughter duo had returned to Pakistan from London for the first time after being convicted in the Avenfield property case.

The family is now facing two more corruption cases in the accountability court — Al-Azizia Steel Mills and Flagship Investments — in which they are accused of money laundering, tax evasion and hiding offshore assets.

The Avenfield reference is one of the three corruption references, filed by the National Accountability Bureau(NAB) on orders of the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP), which disqualified Nawaz Sharif, ousting him from premiership and finding him guilty in the Panama Paper case verdict.

The verdict came at a time when Nawaz Sharif and daughter Maryam Nawaz Sharif were in London to see Begum Kulsum Nawaz Sharif who has been undergoing treatment for cancer.

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