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Monday Apr 29 2019
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Another accused offers to become approver as Zardari, Talpur appear in court

Asif Ali Zardari (R) and Faryal Talpur appeared before the accountability court. File photo. 

ISLAMABAD: A third suspect offered to become an approver as Pakistan Peoples Party leaders Asif Ali Zardari and Faryal Talpur appeared before an accountability court in Islamabad on Monday.

Accountability Court II Judge Arshad Malik is hearing the long-running money laundering and fake bank accounts case, which was transferred from a banking court in Karachi upon the National Accountability Bureau's (NAB) appeal.

As the hearing got underway, an accused named Sher Mohammad requested the court that he be allowed to testify as a witness. At this, the NAB prosecutor told the court that the accused’s application had been received by the bureau and that it was reviewing the application.

The accused is the third suspect to have offered to testify as a witness, after two women during a hearing dated April 8 also offered to become approvers in the case.

The court then extended the interim bail of Zardari and his sister Talpur till May 9 in the money laundering and fake bank accounts case.

Zardari, Talpur pre-arrest bail extended till May 15

The Islamabad High Court on Monday extended the pre-arrest interim bail of Zardari and his sister Talpur till May 15.

Their pre-arrest bail had previously been extended till April 29, and expired today, following the court granted another extension. 

The case

The FIA is investigating 32 people in relation to money laundering from fictitious accounts, including Zardari and Talpur. Zardari’s close aide Hussain Lawai was arrested in July last year in connection with the probe.

The former president’s other close aide and Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed a close aide and Omni Group chairman and his son, Abdul Ghani, were arrested by FIA in August 2018.

Over 20 ‘benami’ accounts at some private banks were opened in 2013, 2014 and 2015 from where transactions worth billions of rupees were made, according to sources.

The amount, according to FIA sources, is said to be black money gathered from various kickbacks, commissions and bribes.

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