LAHORE: A special court (offences in bank) on Friday allowed an objection of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on its jurisdiction to hear trial in the money laundering and sugar scam inquiry against Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif and his son Hamza.
The court extended the bail of Shehbaz and Hamza for seven days allowing them to file the petitions afresh before the new court. The court also returned the challan to the FIA to be submitted before a Special Judge (Central-I).
The court announced a reserved decision on an application of the FIA and also returned the challan (investigating report) to the prosecution earlier filed against the suspects.
Earlier, the prosecution told the court that the agency had cleared the officials of different banks from any charge in the challan.
During the course of arguments, the court asked the prosecution and the defence as to what would be the fate of the pre-arrest bails granted to the suspects in case the proceedings were shifted to other court.
Amjad Pervez, the counsel of Shhabaz, stated that the bail petitions would automatically be shifted to the other court along with the trial proceedings. Hamza appeared before the court while an application for one-time exemption from personal appearance was filed on behalf of Shehbaz as he was not available due to session of the assembly in Islamabad. And court allowed the application accordingly.
The FIA had booked Shehbaz and his sons Hamza and Suleman in November 2020 in financial fraud, impersonation, forgery criminal misconduct and Anti Money Laundering Act. Suleman Shehbaz is absconding in the UK.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022
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