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Pakistan’s FIA seeks arrests of PM Shehbaz, son in money-laundering case; court docket extends bail

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Mr. Shehbaz and Mr. Hamza appeared earlier than the Particular Court docket amidst excessive safety.

Mr. Shehbaz and Mr. Hamza appeared earlier than the Particular Court docket amidst excessive safety.

Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Company (FIA), which is probing Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and his son and Punjab Chief Minister Hamza Shehbaz in a multi-billion rupees (Pakistani rupees) money-laundering case, on June 4 requested the court docket to permit their arrest for additional investigation. The court docket, nonetheless, prolonged their pre-arrest bail till June 11.

The FIA additionally filed an interim investigation report towards the premier and different suspects within the ₹ 14 billion ($ 75 million) cash laundering case towards them.

Mr. Shehbaz and Mr. Hamza appeared earlier than the Particular Court docket amidst excessive safety.

“An FIA prosecutor submitted an interim investigation report within the court docket and sought arrest of prime suspects – Prime Minister Shehbaz and Punjab Chief Minister Hamza – arguing that their custody is required for additional probe within the case as they haven’t joined the investigation and cooperated with investigators,” a court docket official instructed PTI.

The prime minister’s counsel Advocate Amjad Pervez strongly objected to the FIA’s plea and termed it a “false assertion of the company”.

He stated that the FIA had already investigated the daddy and the son after they had been in jail in Lahore.

He stated that his shoppers had not solely joined the investigation after they had been in jail but additionally appeared earlier than the investigators on the FIA workplace.

“The case is pending for the final one-and-a-half-year and investigation towards Mr. Shehbaz and Mr. Hamza by the FIA has been accomplished,” Mr. Pervez argued.

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He additional stated that this case has been politically motivated which was instituted by the earlier authorities of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf with just one purpose to ship them behind bars.

Within the listening to final week, Mr. Shehbaz had instructed the court docket: “What to speak about cash laundering allegations towards me, I by no means acquired wage and different perks after I was chief minister of Punjab for 10 years or so. God has made me the prime minister of this nation. This case of cash laundering has been instituted towards me and my sons on political grounds as cash laundering fees towards us haven’t any foundation and proof.” Presiding choose Ijaz Awan reissued the arrest warrant for the premier’s different son Suleman Shehbaz within the case and adjourned the listening to until June 11. Mr. Suleman has been absconding within the U.Ok. since 2019.

Ousted prime minister Imran Khan had questioned the presence of Mr. Suleman within the delegation of Mr. Shehbaz that referred to as on the Turkish president this week in Ankara.

Mr. Shehbaz and his sons – Hamza and Suleman – had been booked by the FIA in November 2020 beneath numerous sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act and Anti Cash Laundering Act.

The FIA investigation has stated that it has detected 28 benami accounts, allegedly of the Shehbaz household, by which an quantity of 14 billion Pakistani Rupees was laundered from 2008 to 2018.

The FIA examined the cash path of 17,000 credit score transactions.

The quantity was stored in “hidden accounts” and given to Mr. Shehbaz in his private capability, in keeping with the costs.

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Mr. Imran, since his ouster as premier, has been concentrating on Mr. Shehbaz questioning as how an individual dealing with cash laundering fees can change into the prime minister.

He calls Mr. Shehbaz “Crime Minister” and vows to proceed his wrestle to ship what he phrases “imported authorities” residence. He has additionally blamed the U.S. for ending his authorities after he selected to go to Russia towards its want.

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