Court to record Nawaz’s statement in next Al-Azizia hearing

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ISLAMABAD : The accountability court hearing the Al-Azizia corruption reference against Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday ordered the prosecution to record the former prime minister’s statement during the next hearing.

Prosecutor of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Wasiq Malik informed the court that the watchdog has completed presenting its evidence against the accused in the reference.

A total of 22 witnesses were produced before the accountability court since October last year, following Nawaz’s indictment in the Al-Azizia/Hill Metal Establishment reference.

Copies of the Supreme Court’s verdicts dated April 20 and July 28 have also been submitted in the court, the prosecutor informed.

Khawaja Haris, Nawaz’s lead defence counsel, objected to the prosecutor’s remarks stating that the April 20 verdict was not related to Al-Azizia reference. An older verdict was no longer relevant after another verdict was announced by the apex court, he contended.

It is worth noting that the accountability court has until November 17 to wrap up the remaining two corruption references – Al-Azizia and Flagship Investments – against the Sharif family. The Supreme Court had granted final extension to the court earlier this month, after its deadline to conclude the trials against the Sharifs had ended on October 7.

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