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ISLAMABAD: The Accountability Court on Tuesday issued non-bailable arrest warrants for close aide of former president Asif Ali Zardari, Mushtaq Ahmed, in a corruption case related to over Rs 8.3 billion transactions through fake bank accounts against him and Zardari.

Accountability Court-III Judge Syed Asghar Ali, while hearing the case, issued non-bailable arrest warrant for Mushtaq Ahmed for his continuous absence from the court hearing.

At the start of the hearing, Zardari’s counsel Farooq H Naek filed an application before the court seeking one-day exemption for his client, which the court approved.

National Accountability Bureau (NAB)’s prosecutor Waseem Javed and investigation officer (IO) also appeared before the court.

The court adjourned hearing of the case till August 5.

According to the reference, Ahmed opened a joint account with a private housing society. The account had been used for depositing corruption and money laundering money, the reference says.

It said that there is concrete evidence that Zardari had purchased House No F-32, Block 04, Clifton, Karachi, through corruption money.

It says that the stenographer, Ahmed had made payment for Zardari’s Clifton house.

An amount of Rs 150 million was paid to one Ahmad Abdul Bari against House No F-32, Block 04, Clifton, Karachi, which was transferred in the name of accused Zardari, from the account of Ahmed, it says.

According to the NAB, accused Zardari failed to provide any justification for the acceptance of an amount of Rs 150 million, which proves that amount received through a complicated, circuitous and devious route by using the convict Zain Malik and his trusted person accused Ahmed, by concealing the origin and trail of money, the same was used to purchase House NoF-32, Block 04, Clifton, Karachi.

The NAB reference says that during investigation it has transpired that accused Ahmed was appointed as a stenographer in the President House who remained there from 2009 till 2013 and in the same period accused Zardari was the president of Pakistan.

The financial profile of accused Ahmed is also investigated, which shows that the accused, Ahmed had no such source of income to match the magnitude of transactions in the above mentioned joint account, it says.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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