Wednesday, January 19, 2022
Web Desk

Avenfield reference: NAB files petition in IHC to dismiss Maryam’s acquittal plea

NAB, in its petition, says Maryam's pleas should be rejected as they are inadmissible

Web Desk
PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz. — AFP/File
PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz. — AFP/File

  • Maryam's father Nawaz Sharif, brothers Hassan and Hussain are judicial fugitives in the case, NAB petition says.
  • Says allegations on the caretaker judge of the case fall under contempt of court.
  • NAB, in its petition, says Maryam's pleas should be rejected as they are inadmissible.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) filed a petition in Islamabad High Court (IHC), seeking the dismissal of PML-N Vice-President Maryam Nawaz’s appeals in the Avenfield properties reference, Geo News reported.

In the petition, the country's accountability watchdog pleaded to the court to dismiss Maryam's pleas for acquittal as they are "inadmissible."

The petition said that Maryam has failed to mention correct facts and figures in her pleas, while Supreme Court had already given the verdict on her petition regarding the dismissal of the case."

It said that the NAB court had announced a verdict according to law after having a "fair and transparent trial in Avenfield properties reference."

The petition further said that Maryam's father, "Nawaz Sharif and brothers Hassan and Hussain, are judicial fugitives in the case," however, the accused in the case had not provided a money trail of their London flats yet.

The NAB further stated that SC had appointed a judge to monitor the case hearing and trial, therefore, Maryam's petition "is nothing short of fraud with the court."

"Allegations on the caretaker judge of the case fall under contempt of court," the petition said.

Maryam files petition in IHC

Last year, Maryam had filed a separate petition in the IHC, seeking the annulment of the verdict related to the Avenfield Apartments reference.

Maryam’s petition also stated that former accountability judge Arshad Malik's video was also proof that the cases against the Sharif family were influenced”.

NAB court's verdict

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.

Soon after the verdict was announced by the accountability court in 2018, Nawaz, 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.

Meanwhile, the IHC registrar imposed two objections on Maryam’s petition. The IHC registrar office maintained that Maryam made the same appeal as that in the main petition challenging the Avenfield reference verdict.

Secondly, the petitioner can acquire fresh grounds only with the court’s permission.

The lawyers representing Maryam have been informed about the objections, and a special bench — comprising Justice Amir Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kiyani — will conduct a hearing on the petition tomorrow (October 6).

During the hearing, the IHC will hear the registrar’s objections as well.

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.