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December 8, 2017

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Al-Aziziya case: Nawaz’s objections on bank record rejected

Al-Aziziya case: Nawaz’s objections on bank record rejected

ISLAMABAD: The Accountability Court on Thursday rejected the objection raised by ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s assistant lawyer over the submitted record in Al-Azizia Steel Mills case.

Accountability Court Judge Muhammad Bashir was hearing the Azizia Steel Mills corruption reference filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) against Nawaz Sharif and the members of his family. Defence counsel Khawaja Harris’ assistant lawyer Ayesha Hamid represented him in the court on Thursday. On Wednesday, the court heard NAB’s plea to include documents provided by Noreen Shahzad, who replaced prosecution witness Malik Tayyab as the branch manager of Standard Chartered Bank in the case record. Hamid had objected to the request saying that since Noreen Shahzad’s name was not on the witness list, the documents provided by her could not be counted as evidence.

In what capacity had Noreen Shahzad submitted documents to the court, Ayesha Hamid asked adding that Shahzad was not able to present an authority letter from her employer. She had also said that the defence team was not informed about Noreen Shahzad’s involvement in the case.

The court after hearing arguments from both sides on Thursday rejected the objections raised by Ayesha Hamid against Noreen Shahzad’s status. The judge ordered that documents presented by Noreen Shahzad be made part of the case record.

The NAB prosecutor had argued that Noreen Shahzad is now the manager of the bank where Tayyab was earlier employed. He said Noreen Shahzad too has presented documents concerning Nawaz Sharif’s bank accounts.

After dismissing the lawyer’s plea, the court resumed recording the statement of Malik Tayyab, the witness. According to documents presented by Tayyab Rs1.19 billion were transferred to Sharif’s account at different times between 2010 and 2017.

Sharif’s account contained 7,568 Euros in August 2017, the documents said. Once Malik Tayyab completed recording his statement the judge adjourned the case till December 11 when the witness would be cross examined.

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