The Godfather made its way into SC's Panamagate judgment

Published: April 20, 2017


The Supreme Court’s verdict on the Panama case may have left many with mixed feelings but the 549-page-long judgment chose a rather interesting way to begin its judgment on corruption allegations against the Sharif family — a reference to Mario Puzo’s novel, The Godfather which also went on to become Hollywood’s most famous modern classic.



“The popular 1969 novel “The Godfather” by Mario Puzo recounted the violent tale of a Mafia family and the epigraph selected by the author was fascinating,” the judgement read, leading readers to an epigraph at the beginning of the novel.

“Behind every great fortune there is a crime – Balzac”

The judgment goes on to explain how the epigraph was inspired by a sentence authoured by Honore de Balzac. The original quote:  “The secret of a great success for which you are at a loss to account is a crime that has never been found out because it was properly executed.”

The court then observed how it was ‘ironical’ and a sheer coincidence that the present case revolves around the very sentence attributed to Balzac.  We don’t know what to make of the reference but it definitely caught the attention of people on Twitter. Here are some reactions:

In a 3-2 judgement, the bench noted that at present there was ‘insufficient’ evidence to remove Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The JIT has been given two months to complete the probe into the premier and his sons Hussain and Hasan, all of whom have also been directed to appear before the JIT. The investigators will also have to present bi-weekly reports to a special bench of the Supreme Court.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • Sabi
    Apr 21, 2017 - 12:23AM

    This was the most ridiculous observation I have ever come across.Sad that this was heard in the highest Comoros of justice.
    Really disappointed.Recommend

  • Sabi
    Apr 21, 2017 - 12:27AM

    “Behind every great fortune there is a crime – Balzac”
    I don’t believe it. But he used it as the foundation for his judgment.Recommend

  • Ali
    Apr 21, 2017 - 8:03AM

    This is also the case in academics where many people cherish such great fortune like distinguished HEC researchers & professors due to pathetic policies of HEC. Alas !!!Recommend

  • Ravian
    Apr 21, 2017 - 8:32AM

    Not an appropriate quote for the Honorable Judge to use. This means that every rich person was a criminal at some point !! An honest person cannot make a fortune !! Recommend

  • OSD
    Apr 21, 2017 - 3:36PM

    Quite underwhelming. By pointing to such fictional works, the judges have come across as slightly non-serious and partial to one side. The judgement thus shows that they were convinced of the guilt solely on the basis of the petitioner’s loud machinations and not the legal aspects. Recommend

  • leo jesus
    Apr 22, 2017 - 1:23AM

    yes it is true. Not every fortune but every great fortune there’s always a crime.Recommend

  • Muhammad Zahid
    May 1, 2017 - 2:44PM

    With due respect, to all honorable Judges, They are the face of country.

    In my opinion, rest of other things, the statement of GODFATHER, is not a decent example from such higher court. It means every rich person is criminal on any stage.Recommend

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