Court reserves verdict on Lawai's bail plea

Decision to be announced on Monday [August 20]

Our Correspondent August 19, 2018
Chairman of the PSX boards, Hussain Lawai. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: The special banking court, hearing the case of the multi-billion-rupee money laundering scandal, reserved on Saturday the verdict on the bail plea of the accused, Hussain Lawai and Taha Raza. The decision will be announced on Monday.

During the hearing, FIA ADG Malik Mumtazul Ahsan said the case involved 29 fake bank accounts, adding individuals earning a salary of Rs20,000 had Rs4.4 billion transferred into their accounts at the time Lawai was the head of Summit Bank.

The court inquired if there was any evidence that these funds were transferred unlawfully and even if this was black money. The court asked the IO to convince the court that the accused were forced to open these bank accounts because they needed to.

The IO responded by saying that they had collected all the evidence from Lawai's cellphone on his WhatsApp, E-mail and Messages and they had all the evidence to prove how the funds were transferred and when.

Lawai's lawyer said that there was no evidence submitted against his client, to which the court asked him about his opinion with regard to the WhatsApp messages. The lawyer said that there hadn't been a forensic test conducted on them yet and until then, they had no legal value. He added that the FIA had made tall claims in the SC, but had failed to present any evidence in the trial. 

Published in The Express Tribune, August 19th, 2018.

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