Court adjourns hearing in fake degrees, money laundering case against Axact CEO

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An additional district and sessions court in Karachi on Saturday adjourned the hearing of the fake degrees and money laundering cases against Axact Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Shoaib Shaikh till April 24.

Additional District and Sessions Judge (South) Saira Junejo, while hearing the cases the multi-million-dollar scam, referred the money laundering case against the primary suspect Shoaib Shaikh and others to a sessions judge and adjourned hearing till April 24.

During the hearing, Shaikh’s lawyer asked for more time in the fake degrees case. The court observed that it will look at the fake degrees case in light of the law.

Others accused – Zeeshan Anwar, Zeeshan Ahmed and Ali Ghaffar – remained present in the court on this occasion as compared to Shaikh who only marked his attendance in the court and left.

The Axact scandal surfaced in May 2015 when The New York Times published a report which claimed the company sold fake diplomas and degrees online through hundreds of fictitious schools, making “tens of millions of dollars annually”.

The noose tightened around the Axact CEO with the initiation of another money laundering case, involving billions of rupees by the State Bank Circle last month.

Confirming the start of yet another inquiry by the State Bank, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) said it is trying to probe Shoaib Shaikh’s source of income as well as the source of money to purchase Axact’s central office in Khayaban-e-Ittehad, Defence, two large buildings of Axact’s Bol TV, dozens of vehicles, DSNG vans, expensive technical equipment and expenses incurred on the construction of several buildings.