Court to hear bail plea of Hamza, others in money laundering case on Jan 22


ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) has fixed for January 22 the hearing of post-arrest bail requests of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President and Punjab Assembly Opposition Leader Hamza Shahbaz and two others in a money laundering reference against the members of the Sharif family.

The other two suspects are Fazal Dad Abbasi and Muhammad Shoaib Qamar who have worked for the Sharif family since 2005.

A three-judge bench comprising Justice Mushir Alam, Justice Sardar Tariq Masood and Justice Yahya Afridi will hear the petition.

According to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Abbasi and Qamar allegedly aided, abetted and facilitated principal accused including PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza by way of providing channel/services for money laundering by arranging false and fictitious entries of foreign remittances sent by various individuals to accused.

In November, an accountability court indicted Shehbaz, Hamza and eight other suspects in the Rs7 billion reference. Shehbaz’s daughter, Javeria Ali, was also indicted through her pleader while four members of the family had not joined the proceedings before the court. They are Nusrat Shehbaz, her son Shehbaz and son-in-law Haroon Yousaf. Nusrat, Shebaz’s daughter Rabia Imran, Suleman and Haroon have been declared absconders.

The reference mainly accused Shehbaz of being a beneficiary of the assets held in the name of his family members and frontmen who had no sources to acquire such assets.

It said the family members and frontmen of the family received fake foreign remittances of billions in their personal bank accounts. In addition to these remittances, the NAB said billions of rupees were laundered by way of foreign pay orders, which were deposited with personal bank accounts of Hamza and Suleman.

Sharif and his family failed to justify the sources of funds used for the acquisition of assets, the NAB said.