Tag Archives: NAB

NAB freezes assets of Shehbaz Sharif and his family

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Wednesday ordered to freeze assets of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif and his family members in a case pertaining to assets beyond known sources of income, a private TV channel reported.

In separate letters written to various departments including excise and taxation, revenue and district governments, the NAB has ordered that all moveable and immoveable assets belonging to Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif and his family members should be frozen with immediate effect. The anti-graft watchdog has also banned sale, purchase and transfer of all properties belonging to former Punjab chief minister and his family members including Hamza Shehbaz, Sulaiman Shehbaz, Nusrat Shehbaz and Tehmina Durrani.

The letters have been sent to deputy commissioners (DCs) of Haripur and Model Town, and director generals of excise department, Defence Housing Authority (DHA), Lahore Development Authority (LDA), SECP, Judicial Housing Authority and JDA.

The frozen assets include three properties belonging to Tehmina Durrani in Hairpur’s Pir Sohawa tourist resort; two Toyota Land Cruiser SUVs owned by Shehbaz; two plots (87 and 96) in Model Town’s block-H owned by Nusrat Shehbaz; two plots belonging to Tehmina Durrani in DHA Lahore’s Phase-V; 14 properties belonging to Hamza and Sulaiman; Shehbaz family’s trading assets in Ramzan Sugar Mills, European-Asian Trading Co, Madina Trading, Sharif Feed Mills, Madina Construction Co, Sharif Poultry Farm, Sharif Dairy Farm, Ramzan Energy, Sharif Milk Products, Crystal Plastics, Chiniot Power, Ag Energy Consultants, Al-Arabia Sugar Mills and Unitas Power.

NAB on October 5, 2018, had arrested Shehbaz in connection with the Ashiana-e-Iqbal Housing Scheme case. However, it also initiated another inquiry against him for allegedly owning assets beyond known sources of income. During investigation into the case, the NAB arrested few suspects, including Shehbaz’s son, Punjab Assembly Opposition Leader Hamza Shehbaz. Some suspects revealed that they had been doing the job for Sharif family. Later on, NAB arrested one Mushtaq Chini, who later became an approver against Shehbaz. NAB had also sent questionnaires to Shehbaz’s wives, daughters and other family members, seeking details about assets, businesses and properties. However, now NAB has decided to freeze the assets as Shehbaz and his family members could not satisfy the investigation team.

Sindh Bank chief arrested by NAB in fake bank accounts case

 

ISLAMABAD:  A joint team of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Rawalpindi and Karachi officials on Wednesday arrested the president and two other officials of Sindh Bank in connection with the fake accounts case.

In a brief statement, the graft buster said it had arrested Tahir Ahsan, the president of Sindh Bank, in Karachi over his involvement in the fake accounts case.

Bilal Sheikh, a former president and current director of the bank, and Syed Nadeem Altaf, the bank’s executive vice president, have also been rounded up. Sheikh was arrested by a NAB team in Lahore.

“The accused persons will be produced before the accountability court in Karachi for the grant of transit remand. After remand from the court, the accused persons will be shifted to Islamabad as per law,” the statement read.

The bank officials face charges of granting loans to the tune of Rs 1.8 billion to companies owned by Omni Group.

These companies include the Seracom Stock and Capital Private Limited, Parkview Stock Capital Limited and Rubicon Builders and Developers Private Limited.

In December 2015, the Federal Investigation Agency began a discreet investigation into certain bank accounts through which multi-billion rupee transactions have been made. According to FIA sources, information regarding the fake accounts came to the fore when an intelligence agency picked up a prominent money changer in an unrelated case.

As the monitoring and investigation of these suspicious accounts continued, it surfaced that five of these accounts in two banks – the Sindh Bank and Summit Bank – had been used for transactions worth around Rs 15 billion.

Investigation showed the accounts were operated by fake companies. Funds were credited into these accounts from contractors with multi-billion rupee contracts with the Sindh government. The money was found to have been transferred to accounts of companies owned and operated by the Omni Group, whose chairperson, Anwar Majeed, is a close aide of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari. Another beneficiary was Nasir Lootah, the chairperson of Summit Bank.

The probe, however, was shelved. It resumed almost a year and a half later. FIA’s State Bank circle initiated a formal inquiry in January 2018.

By June last year, the FIA had several high-profile names on its list but was unable to make headway – for several reasons. It was at his point that the Supreme Court intervened. Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar took suo motu notice of the ‘slow progress’ in the money laundering case.

In July 2018, Zardari’s close aides — Hussain Lawai, Taha Raza and two others were arrested. Subsequently, the first case was registered in the mega-corruption scandal.

The FIA submitted its report to the apex court on July 8, 2018 that revealed a web of companies and accounts that were being used to transfer billions of rupees. All in all, 29 accounts were identified that received payments, totalling at least Rs 35 billion.

In August last year, the FIA named Zardari, Talpur Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed, his sons and over 10 others as suspects in an interim charge sheet filed in the banking court for alleged money laundering to the tune of over Rs4 billion through 29 fake bank accounts opened in three banks.

The then chief justice ordered the formation of a joint investigation team (JIT) to quicken the pace of the investigation.

It questioned 767 individuals, including Zardari and Talpur, while PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari submitted written responses.

Last month, NAB arrested Zardari after the Islamabad High Court recalled the pre-arrest bail granted to him and his sister Faryal Talpur in the fake accounts case.

Later NAB declared Talpur’s F-8 sector residence in Islamabad as a sub-jail and placed her under house arrest.

Maryam Nawaz summoned by court over fake trust deed

 

An accountability court in Islamabad on Tuesday summoned Maryam Nawaz, vice president of the PML-N, over the use of a bogus trust deed in the Avenfield properties case after the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) moved an application before accountability judge Mohammad Bashir.

NAB Deputy Prosecutor General Sardar Muzaffar Khan Abbasi filed the application, seeking action against Maryam Nawaz for producing a bogus trust deed before the accountability court in order to conceal the London properties.

Maryam Nawaz has been summoned to the hearing on July 19.

NAB application read, “The above conclusion [that the document used was bogus] by this court was reached after evaluating the entire evidence; hence, it is apparent that the respondent has maliciously fabricated and tendered false evidence/information with the intention to mislead the due process of law and trial and hamper the administration of justice.”

The judge inquired from the prosecutor on what grounds the court would proceed in this matter. Abbasi, in response, pointed out that the judge had the power to initiate action against Maryam Nawaz under Section 30 of the National Accountability Ordinance (NAO), 1999 read with serial number three of the Schedule of NAO, 1999.

Subsection ‘a’ of section 30 of the NAO reads, “On pronouncement of [a] judgment, the court shall have the jurisdiction and power to take cognizance of any offence committed in the course of the investigating or trial of a case by any officer, any witness, including an expert, who has tendered false evidence in the case.”

While serial number three says, “Giving false information or fabricating false evidence during an inquiry into or investigation of an offence by NAB or any agency authorised by NAB” entails “rigorous imprisonment for a term, which may extend to five years.”

The development comes after a delay of over a year after the conviction of Maryam Nawaz in the Avenfield properties reference.

Last year, on July 6, 2018, accountability judge Mohammad Bashir had convicted former premier Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz in Avenfield properties reference and sentenced them 10 years and 07 years imprisonment, respectively.

NAB chief approves filing of Park Lane properties reference against Zardari

During the executive board meeting of the bureau on Wednesday, the NAB chief consented to file the reference, against the Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman, which incurred the loss of Rs 3.77 billion to the national exchequer.

According to details, Asif Ali Zardari was allegedly for running a fake front company by the name of Parathon as a shareholder in Park Lane properties.

The charges entail that the former president took out a loan from the National Bank of Pakistan in the name of Parathon.

A loan worth Rs 1.5 billion was taken out from the bank and transferred to the company account in a private bank. It has also been revealed that he had forged documents to comply with the loan policy and coaxed the National Bank into loan approval.

Zardari is already under the custody of NAB for being an accused in the fake bank accounts case.

Earlier, the PPP leader had moved the Sindh High Court over the Park Lane Company issue on April 16.