Nawaz moves IHC viz. Al Azizia conviction

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ISLAMABAD: Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif urged Islamabad High Court on Tuesday to set aside conviction and fine that Accountability Court awarded in Azizia Steel Mills reference on December 24 soon after he was sent to Adila jail and on the next day was shifted to Kot Lakhpat jail Lahore.

While awarding seven-year sentence to Nawaz Sharif in Al-Azizia Steel Mills reference, Accountability Court acquitted him in Flagship corruption reference filed in wake of Panama papers case.

Filing appeal before the IHC, Khawaja Haris, counsel for Nawaz Sharif submitted that Accountability Court has convicted his client on the grounds of inadmissible evidence, misconception while misinterpreting the law.

Challenging the verdict, Khawaja Haris requested the IHC for acquittal of his client in the case because learned judge of the Accountability Court has committed grave error of law in attempting to nullify authenticity of some documents during adjudication.

It is worth mentioning that earlier the top anti-graft body had filed three references in Avenfield, Al-Aziza Steel Mills, Hill Metal Establishment and offshore companies including Flagship Investment Limited against Sharif family in pursuance of the Supreme Court directives of July 2017 in Panama papers case.

The Accountability Court commenced trial in the matter during last September. The three-time premier and his sons Hasan and Hussain were accused in all the three graft references whereas his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Muhammad Safdar were accused in the Avenfield reference only.

Sharif was ousted and disqualified from holding office by the Supreme Court in July 2017 and jailed during 2018 in absentia as he was apprehended on July 13 upon returning from London. However, on September 19, IHC had granted bail to Nawaz Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law Capt (Retd) Safdar. – TLTP