Former Pakistan PM gets 10 years for corruption, daughter sentenced to seven

Maryam Nawaz outside the Avenfield apartments today. She will hear the verdict with her father and former finance minister Ishaq Dar- Geo News

Accountability Judge Mohammad Bashir was slated to announce the verdict today, however, the ousted PM and his daughter had filed an application with a duty judge on Thursday, seeking a seven-day delay in the judgement in the wake of the health of Sharif's wife Kulsoom Nawaz, who is undergoing treatment for cancer in London.

A copy of the verdict said the Sharif family had failed to prove a legal source of income for the purchase of the Avenfield apartments.

His family, however, insist they legitimately acquired the four properties.

"Sharif will be exonerated by the people's court", he said.

In compliance to the Supreme Court order of July 28, 2017, which ousted the three-time prime minister, declaring him "dishonest" under Article 62 (1) (f) of Pakistan's constitution, three corruption references were filed by Pakistan's National Accountability Court (NAB) in September against the Sharifs and a fourth against their relative, ex-finance minister Ishaq Dar. But in the ruling that ousted Mr. Sharif from office previous year, the Supreme Court concluded that he and his family members could not adequately explain how they were able to afford the expensive London apartments and that they failed to provide a money trail.

His daughter Maryam Nawaz has been awarded seven and her husband Captain (retd) Safdar one year imprisonment in the case. But Nawaz will have to first face formal arrest because an absconder, according to the law, has no right of audience before a court.

"We reject this decision", his brother Shahbaz Sharif, who is leading the PML-N into Pakistan's second ever democratic transition of power, told a televised press conference in Lahore shortly after the verdict.

Shehbaz said the actual verdict will be given on July 25 when the elections will be held.

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Sharif has a history of conflict with the military even though his political career was initially nurtured by military dictator Zia ul-Haq in the 1980s.

He fell out with powerful generals once he ascended to power a decade later, and relations became fraught after his return as premier in 2013, partly because he challenged the military over foreign policy, which the generals traditionally considered their domain.

The case is connection with several high-profile properties brought by the Sharif family in London in mid-1990s.

Claiming that Nawaz and Pakistan Peoples Party chief Asif Zardari destroyed state institutions, Imran said he joined politics to rid the country of corruption.

Khan is running on a socially conservative, anti-corruption platform.

One predicts PML-N riding a sympathy vote back to parliament, especially since Nawaz has sold his disqualification to the electorate as a military-judiciary conspiracy.

The NAB court accused Sharif and his family of money laundering.

"The biggest looters should go to jail, not to assemblies", he said calling on others to offer prayers of gratitude.

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