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July 10, 2018

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Al-Azizia/Hill Metal references: Kh Haris pleads for fixing cases in other court

ISLAMABAD: Accountability Court (AC) Judge Muhammad Bashir here on Monday adjourned hearing till July 12, into Al-Azizia/Hill Metal Establishment corruption reference after legal counsel for Nawaz Sharif Khawaja Haris Ahmad raised an objection that since the evidence in Al-Azizia is quite similar to Avenfield corruption reference, hence this court should fix this matter before some other AC and the judge should recuse in other two cases.

It is mentioned here that Khawaja Haris since filing of these corruption references against Nawaz Sharif and his children; had been pressing hard to either jointly hear these cases or joint framing of charges but when all his applications were dismissed, he finally requested the AC to simultaneously render its judgments in all the three corruption references. He had been requesting that with decision in one corruption reference, the court would disclose its mind and then it would not be appropriate for the same court to continue hearing into the two other references as the facts and circumstances of all the three cases are quite similar.

On Friday July 6, AC announced its judgment in Avenfiled apartments corruption reference convicting all the three under trial accused, awarding Nawaz Sharif 11-year rigorous imprisonment with £8 million fine, 8-year imprisonment with £2 million fine to Maryam Nawaz and one-year rigorous imprisonment Captain (R) Muhammad Safdar.

Today the case was fixed for cross-examination in Al-Azizia/Hill Metal Establishment corruption reference when Haris raised an objection that this court should not hear this case any further. AC Judge Muhammad Bashir said that the third, one-month extension for adjudication of this trial has also gone lapsed and therefore he needs to write once again to the apex court’s supervisory judge for further extension in the period. AC judge said that he would also mention Haris objection in this matter. Haris said that the matter should also be referred to the Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice for placing the other two references before some other AC judge.

It is to mention here that in the two remaining references, Al-Azizia and Flagship, Nawaz Sharif and his two sons are accused. Deciding Avenfield Apartments corruption reference, AC had issued perpetual warrants of arrest for Hussain Nawaz and Hassan Nawaz.

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