Shehbaz declines to recognize witness in fake accounts case

Says his decisions ‘hurt’ his family businesses

By: News Desk      Published: 12:36 PM, 25 Sep, 2021
Shehbaz declines to recognize witness in fake accounts case
File photos.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly (NA) Shehbaz Sharif said on Saturday that he did not cause any benefit to the sugar mills owned by his family, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

During the hearing of a ‘money laundering’ and fake bank accounts case filed against him and his son Hamza Shehbaz at a banking court in Lahore, Shehbaz, who thrice remained Punjab chief minister, said his decisions rather hurt his family’s business interests. 

Shehbaz said he could not recognize MCB Vice President Azhar Mehmood who turned up at the court as one of the witnesses in the case. 

Later, the court adjourned the hearing of the case until October 9.

Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Director Dr. Rizwan and investigation officers (IOs) appeared in the court along with the case record enclosed in five boxes.

Giving details of ‘fake’ bank accounts to the court, FIA prosecutor said both Sharifs had opened these accounts in which they would deposit their ill-gotten wealth. “57 such accounts had been opened only in the names of owners of Ramzan Sugar Mills,” he said.

FIA Director Dr. Rizwan told the court that both Shehbaz and Hamza had laundered huge sums abroad. “The suspects would deposit their money in these accounts before sending it abroad,” he said, and added, “This is not a case, but a ‘case study’ which should be taught at business accounting schools.” 

FIA director further claimed that the Sharifs had used the bank accounts of their employees to launder Rs25 billion.

He told the court that more revelations were expected through Interpol.

Dr. Rizwan was of the view that ‘money laundering’ was impossible without the cooperation of senior government servants.

He alleged that the accused were not cooperating with the FIA investigation officers in the case at all. 

FIA director, however, opposed the idea of the premature arrest of Sharifs.