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Pakistan

February 21, 2021

Anjum Dar, Kaveh Moussavi met in UK, Germany but Nawaz not 'discussed'

Pakistan

Sun, Feb 21, 2021
(L-R) German-Pakistani national Anjum Dar, former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, and Broadsheet LLC chief executive Kaveh Moussavi. The News/Author/Files

LONDON: Anjum Dar, a German-Pakistani national and one of the central characters in the ongoing Broadsheet LLC scandal, has rejected as baseless a claim that he offered $25-million bribe to Kaveh Moussavi, the British asset recovery firm's chief executive, on behalf of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in 2012, according to a detailed email trail between the two.

A month ago, Moussavi had made headlines when he claimed that Dar met him in London twice and offered $25 million to stop investigating Nawaz Sharif but Anjum Dar appeared on Geo News programme "Naya Pakistan" to answer questions about his involvement in the Broadsheet matter.

The email trail also establishes that Moussavi actively engaged to find ways to get money from Pakistan, including through a commission and without having to go through a court trial.

The email trail between Dar, Moussavi and two other individuals establishes that Pirouz Bagher, the Germany-based first cousin of the asset recovery firm's CEO, offered Dar a $40-million commission if he could help get Broadsheet to successfully negotiate $500 million from the government of Pakistan.

Moussavi’s original claim was for nearly $500 million from Pakistan.

Dar’s lawyers in UK and Germany have contradicted the claim that their client, during their meeting in the UK, showed Moussavi pictures of himself with Nawaz, allegedly presenting himself as the former premier's nephew and offering a $25-million bribe on his behalf.

Dar has insisted that Nawaz's name never came up in their conversations and that he never mentioned anything related to Broadsheet LLC during his 12-minute meeting with Nawaz in the presence of three other people.

Communication evidence shows Dar’s picture with Nawaz Sharif was not even created when he met Moussavi in Germany's Hamburg Airport on July 28, 2012, for their first meeting and for the last time in the UK — Canterbury/Oxford — August 3, 2012. It was, however, snapped on August 30 when Dar met the former premier in Jati Umra in the presence of PML-N Lahore Joint Secretary Rana Siddique and two others.

On the evening of August 30, 2012, Nawaz's photographer Zulfikar Balti emailed Dar his pictures with the former premier and Dar forwarded the same to Moussavi on September 3, 2012.

According to the email records, Moussavi and Dar exchanged five emails between the September 1-18, 2012, dates. Dar’s lawyers say their client sent three of his pictures with Nawaz to the asset recovery firm's CEO on September 3, 2012, from Lahore but that was to tell him that he was busy in Pakistan.

Dar said he was keen to work with Moussavi to see if his settlement could be reached with Pakistan but the latter did not show him any evidence of accounts of Pakistanis with millions of dollars deposited.

Originally from Lahore, Dar has been living and working in Germany for over 40 years. Moussavui and Dar did not know each other directly, according to the communication evidence.

In the end of 2011, Dar met Moussavi's cousin Bagher, who lives in Hamburg. The latter wanted to produce golf gloves in Pakistan with the intention of importing them to Europe and wanted the former's help with business contacts.

The email trail shows that Moussavi’s first meeting with Dar took place at the Hamburg Airport.

On January 23, 2012, Bagher wrote to Dar with the subject “Potential business in Pakistan Claim”.

"Hello Mr. Dar, in addition to the other points that I would like to discuss with you, I have a very interesting and acute case in front of me. One of my cousins was searching for the previous government’s assets for the Pakistani government," the email read.

"After a successful search, the fee amounts to approximately $500 million. This is contractually secured. Difficulties arise when claiming the fee. In the meantime, a large international law firm has bought into the claim.

"The background is that my cousin and his company do not want to spend decades in court, therefore want a deal without court. Pakistani Government has raised from 20 Million to USD 75 Million but my cousin and his company want $100 million.

“With the rudimentary description of the situation, the following possibility arises. If your contacts with Pakistani government are sufficient, you could be involved in this case. It would be conceivable for example that 50% of everything that goes over $100 million is received as commission.

"I think it is conceivable that a legally secured claim of $500 million result in an amount of around $180 million, then $40 million would be paid for the mediation.”

Dar replied to the German-Iranian national on January 29, 2012, asking to see the proof “from your side that such deal exists and want to have such paper”.

In a response email dated February 14, 2012, Bagher invited Dar to meet Moussavi in Amsterdam but the latter replied a day later — on February 15, 2012 — that he cannot travel to Holland and would prefer meeting the firm's chief in Düsseldorf or Köln, Germany.

Bagher wrote to Dar on June 25, 2012, stating that Moussavi hopes to get around $800 million from Pakistan and not $500 million as previously claimed. He claimed in an email that Pakistan is willing to give his fee of $30 million but he wants an additional $10 million.

Dar replied that he was willing to take up this matter with someone in Pakistan if he could see some proof of assets recoveries, bank accounts, and other assets as he claimed to have found.

On June 27, 2012, Bagher wrote to Dar telling him Moussavi wanted to meet him urgently and suggested the UK's City of Oxford for a meeting and another one in New York to meet Moussavi's partner. Dar replied that he would need proof of the deal between Pakistan and Moussavi before the meeting.

Moussavi landed at the Hamburg Airport on July 28, 2012, and met Dar at 1300 hours in the presence of Bagher and another person. At this meeting, Moussavi gave Dar a list of “targets” containing around 136 names that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had provided to Broadsheet LCC.

Dar’s lawyer say that during the Hamburg meeting, Dar asked Moussavi for proof so he could go through the contents and then find someone in Pakistan to take a look.

Records show that Dar drove from Germany to Oxford — Moussavi’s town — on August 3, 2012 where Moussavi gave him a copy of the Broadsheet-NAB agreement called “Assets Recovery Agreement (ARA)" to Dar.

In the meeting, Moussavi claimed that he knew about several accounts of Pakistanis carrying tens of millions of dollars but, according to the lawyers, showed no proofs to back up his claim, not at that time or after.

On September 18, 2012, Dar and Moussavi exchanged emails for the last time.

Broadsheet had asked Dar if he had any updates or development to which Dar replied: “I am in Dubai and coming back tomorrow afternoon. I don’t understand what you and your all people want. I met you two times and you told me about the case and gave me some paper. The important things are missing.

"You didn’t show me or gave me any proof against these gentlemen. I never seen anything. Where I can go and discuss with these peoples. Without any proof I cannot talk with these high level people and without the proof I don’t want to lose my face.

"So please let me show your proof if you want that I can handle these.”

Moussavi replied for the last time on September 18, 2012: “Dear Anjum, thank you for your response. Please destroy all papers that we gave you, on trust. We will not be troubling you any Further.”

After the silence of over eight years, the names of both Moussavi and Dar exploded in the Pakistani media.