LAHORE: After arresting his daughter Maryam Nawaz and nephew Yousaf Abbas in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills case, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided to include former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in the investigation.
According to sources, the accountability watchdog sent a questionnaire to the ex-prime minister at Kot Lakhpat Jail on Thursday, which was delivered to the prisoner by the jail superintendent.
On August 8, NAB team had detained Maryam Nawaz outside the Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore in the same case. Her remand, once again, was extended by an accountability court on Aug 21.
During the proceedings, NAB’s lawyer had said that the investigations with Maryam had not yet been completed and requested an extension in remand for that purpose. He had claimed the suspect was not cooperating with the bureau.
In response, Maryam’s lawyer Advocate Amjad Pervez had said that the investigation had been carried out in all cases and the trial had been completed.
Maryam had appeared before NAB on July 31 to record her statement in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills reference. The statement was regarding ‘dubious’ business transactions of the CSM of which she was one of the major shareholders.
SUGAR MILLS CASE:
According to NAB, in January 2018, the PML-N government’s financial monitoring unit had reported to NAB a huge suspicious transaction involving billions of rupees in Chaudhry Sugar Mills under the Anti-Money Laundering Act.
Sources further confirmed that a NAB inquiry started in October 2018 and detected that former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz, Shehbaz Sharif and the family of the late Abbas Sharif are shareholders in the company, along with some foreigners hailing from the UAE and UK.
“Huge investments were made in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills from 2001 to 2017 of billions of rupees in the name of the foreigners by issuing shares in the millions to them.
Later on, the same shares of the company were transferred back to Maryam Nawaz, Hussain Nawaz and Nawaz Sharif at various times without paying any consideration, which led to the conclusion that names of foreigners were used as proxies to make huge investments in the company for the reason that Sharif family did not have white money for investment,” a source claimed.
NAB had re-summoned Maryam on August 8, and asked her to provide details of her shareholdings in CSM, details of financial relations with the foreign nationals in question — Saeed Said bin Jabar al Suweidi, a UAE national; Sheikh Zakauddin, a UK national; Hani Ahmad Jamjoon, a Saudi national; and Naseer Abdullah Lootah, a UAE national.
She was also asked to provide details of remittances/telegraphic transfers sent and received by her from abroad. However, she had excused herself from appearing and had gone to meet Nawaz in jail instead when she was taken into custody.
An accountability judge, Mohammad Bashir, on July 6, 2018, convicted Nawaz and Maryam in the Avenfield properties reference and sentenced them to 10 years and seven years imprisonment, respectively. The Islamabad High Court, however, had suspended the sentence and released Maryam and her husband Muhammad Safdar.