Wednesday, September 08, 2021
Web Desk

Avenfield Reference: IHC grants Maryam Nawaz extension to hire new lawyer for plea

Maryam says her previous lawyer will not be representing her case due to illness; a new petition will reveal facts

Web Desk

  • Court grants Maryam an extension to hire a lawyer till September 23.
  • Maryam says she wants to bring some facts to the fore by filing another plea.
  • Court remarks Maryam has the right to hire a lawyer and file a petition according to her will.

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court Wednesday gave Maryam Nawaz an extension to hire a new lawyer before September 23 for her plea challenging the sentence awarded to her in the Avenfield Reference.

A two-member bench, comprising Justice Amir Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhter Kiyani, was hearing the pleas filed by Maryam and her husband Captain Safdar.

During the hearing, Maryam maintained that her lawyer, Advocate Amjad Parvez, has excused himself from further representing her case due to an illness.

She moved the court to grant her an extension to hire a new lawyer.

“I want to bring some facts to the fore by filing another plea,” said Maryam. "I don’t want to give an impression that the case is being delayed."

At this, Justice Farooq remarked that Maryam has the right to hire a lawyer according to her will and file a petition, therefore, the court would not object to this.

However, at Maryam’s request for a month-long extension, the court remarked that the arguments on the case are going on, so a long extension cannot be granted.

The court adjourned the hearing till September 23 while directing Maryam to hire a new lawyer within this period.

Speaking to the media after the hearing, Maryam said that her new petition will expose "all the facts and reveal that why the case was built against them and who was behind it."

Furthermore, she said that the "PTI has failed not only in Punjab but in the entire country."

Avenfield properties reference

The Avenfield reference pertains to the Park Lane apartments (flats 16, 16-A, 17 and 17-A Avenfield House, Park Lane, London, United Kingdom), of the Sharif family and includes former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his three children, and son-in-law Capt (retd) Safdar as accused.

The reference was among three filed against the Sharif family by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) last year on the Supreme Court's directives in the Panama Papers case.

Case’s conclusion

An accountability court had awarded 10 years of imprisonment along with an £8 million fine to former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, seven years of imprisonment along with a penalty to Maryam, and one year of imprisonment to Captain Safdar in Avenfield properties reference on July 6, 2018.

Sharif, Maryam, and Safdar had been released from the Adiyala Jail on September 19 over the IHC’s orders for their release, nullifying the sentences awarded to them by an accountability court in the reference.

Moreover, the court also sentenced Maryam to one year in prison for submitting false documents in court.

The court has also ruled that the Avenfield apartments of the Sharif family, in their possession since 1993, shall be seized by the federal government.