Nawaz Sharif gets 10-year jail term over graft charges
Sayeed Muhammad: Former prime minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison by over his family’s purchase of upscale London flats.
The verdict comes as a major blow to his party ahead of a general election in July, reports Reuters, adding that the 68-year-old was tried in absentia.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) court accused Sharif and his family of being unable to legitimately show the money trail for the purchase of several luxurious properties in London, mostly in the mid-1990s.The verdict threatens to end the career of one Pakistan’s most high-profile politicians over the last four decades, a political survivor who served as prime minister on three occasions. Sharif’s daughter, Maryam was sentenced to seven years in prison. Her husband and PML-N lawmaker Muhammad Safdar was sentenced to one year in prison, said the prosecution. It added that NAB court ordered Sharif to pay a fine of 8 million pounds ($10.6 million) and Maryam was fined 2 million pounds, while ordering the confiscation of the London properties on behalf of the Pakistani government. Both Sharif and his daughter were in London on Friday with Sharif’s wife, Kulsoom, who is being treated there for cancer and is in a coma after suffering a heart attack last month. They both denied wrongdoing and are expected to appeal.
Sharif was ousted by the Supreme Court in July 2017 and barred from politics for being “dishonest” by failing to report a monthly income of 10,000 Emirati dirham ($2,723) from a company owned by his son. He denies drawing the monthly salary.