- Court rejects Taha Raza’s bail plea
- Court says FIA is carrying out an investigation, thus bail pleas cannot be approved
KARACHI: A banking court on Monday rejected bail pleas of former Pakistan Stock Exchange Chairman Hussain Lawai and Taha Raza in a money laundering case.
The banking court while hearing the case said that the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) is carrying out an investigation into the case, thus “the bail pleas cannot be approved at this time”.
Lawai, who is a close aide of former president Asif Ali Zardari, was arrested by the FIA on July 6 in connection to a multi-billion money laundering scam. Moreover, Taha Raza was also arrested in connection with the same case.
Earlier, in August, the banking court issued non-bailable warrants of arrest for Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari and 15 others in the Rs 35 billion money laundering case.
It was also reported that warrants were issued for suspects absconding in the case, including Namar Majeed, Aslam Masood, Arif Khan, Naseer Abdullah Hussain, Adnan Javed, Mohammad Umair, Iqbal, Azam Wazir Khan, Zain Malik, and Mustafa Zulqarnain.
The FIA also requested the banking court for a 14-day remand of former president Asif Zardari’s close aide and Omni Group Chairman Anwar Majeed and his son. The accused’s counsel, Farooq H Naek, opposed the appeal.
In July, the court had sent Hussain Lawai to jail on judicial remand in the money laundering case.
Earlier, the FIA took former president Asif Zardari’s close aide and Omni Group Chairman Anwar Majeed into custody outside the Supreme Court, where he and his family had appeared after repeated absences from hearings of the same case pertaining to money laundering of Rs 35 billion through fake bank accounts.
Majeed and his family had been summoned to court on Aug 13, for the previous hearing of the case, but had not appeared before the three-judge bench led by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar.
As Anwar, Nimr, Ghani, Kamal, and Zulqernain Majeed appeared before the court on Wednesday, the SC ordered their names be placed on the Exit Control List.
The FIA is investigating 32 people in relation to money laundering from fictitious accounts, including Asif Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur. Zardari’s close aide Hussain Lawai was arrested last month in connection with the probe.
Over 20 ‘benami’ accounts at some private banks were opened in 2013, 2014 and 2015 from where transactions worth billions of rupees were made, according to reports. The amount, according to reports, is said to be black money gathered from various kickbacks, commissions and bribes.