Sat, 30 Sep 2023

Islamabad [Pakistan], September 29 (ANI): Four years after their conviction, Islamabad High Court overturning the case on Thursday acquitted PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz and her husband Captain (retd) Safdar in the Avenfield properties corruption case, media reports said.

As per the leaked Panama Papers, Nawaz Sharif owned two offshore companies, namely, Nescoll Limited and Nielson Enterprises Limited. These companies bought apartments no. 16, 16 A, 17 and 17 A, in Avenfield House, Park Lane, London, in 1993, 1995 and 1996.

Pakistan National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had claimed that the apartments were purchased by Nawaz and his children through "corrupt, dishonest or illegal means." NAB also accused Maryam Nawaz Sharif of producing bogus trust deeds, dated 2006, which were also signed by her husband Captain (retd) Safdar as a witness.

In 2018, an accountability court convicted the Sharif family in the Avenfield properties however now the Islamabad High Court has overturned the decision in a major win for the PML-N leader.

After her acquittal, while addressing the media outside the court, the PML-N leader said that her father Nawaz Sharif stood "vindicated". Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said the "edifice of lies, slander and character assassination" had come crumbling down, reported Dawn.

"Maryam's acquittal in the Avenfield reference is a slap in the face of the so-called accountability system that was employed to target the Sharif family. My congratulations to Maryam beti and Safdar," he added.

It is also interesting to note that Maryam is now eligible to contest elections.

The Sharif family had filed appeals against its conviction before the IHC in the second week of August 2018. The court had on September 18, the same year, suspended their sentences and released them on bail.

In October last year, Maryam filed a new application, along with "extremely relevant, simple and clear-cut facts" to seek annulment of the IHC verdict.

In her application, Maryam stated that the entire proceedings that resulted in her conviction were a "classic example of outright violations of law and political engineering hitherto unheard of in the history of Pakistan". (ANI)

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