Court declares Pakistan PM Shahbaz’s son proclaimed offender in money laundering case

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Suleman Shahbaz. File

Tariq Butt, Correspondent

A special court in Lahore on Friday declared Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s son, Suleman, and another suspect proclaimed offenders in the money laundering case.

The Special Court (Central-I) declared Suleman and Tahir Naqvi proclaimed offenders after both the suspects failed to appear despite being summoned.

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) had booked Shahbaz Sharif and his sons Hamza and Suleman in November 2020 under sections 419, 420, 468, 471, 34 and 109 of Prevention of Corruption Act and read with 3/4 of Anti Money Laundering Act.

Arrest warrants had been issued for Suleman and Naqvi on May 28. At the same hearing, the court had also issued arrest warrants for another suspect, Malik Maqsood alias Maqsood, who passed away in a Gulf country last month.

On June 11, the FIA had submitted a report about non-bailable arrest warrants issued for Suleman, Naqvi and Maqsood. In its report, the FIA had stated that the warrants could not be executed since Suleman was not present at his address and had gone abroad.

The court now has details about Suleman’s and Naqvi’s properties as well as Maqsood’s death certificate.

Moreover, the court accepted the request for granting the prime minister a one-time exemption from attending the hearing but directed that he appear before the court at the next hearing. The hearing was subsequently adjourned till July 30.

The FIA had in December 2021 submitted the challan against Shahbaz Sharif and Hamza to a special court for their alleged involvement in laundering in the sugar scam case.

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