LAHORE: An accountability court on Wednesday rejected the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) request to further extend remand period of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz and her cousin, Yousuf Abbas and sent them to Lahore’s Camp Jail.
Maryam and Yousuf had been in NAB’s custody since August 8 when the anti-graft watchdog arrested them in connection with the Chaudhry Sugar Mills (CSM) case.
NAB accused the Sharif family of using the CSM for money laundering and availing millions of rupees in subsidy without actually exporting sugar and NAB counsel on Wednesday requested the court to further extend the remand period by fourteen days.
NAB prosecutor Hafiz Asad told the Accountability Court Judge Ameer Muhammad Khan that during the investigation Maryam and Yousuf have revealed about the presence of a document regarding distribution of properties bequeathed by Mian Sharif, their grandfather.
He requested the court to further extend the remand period for 14 days.
Maryam’s counsel, however, opposed NAB’s request and told the court that the graft-buster had presented the same argument during the previous hearing for getting extension in remand.
The court, later, rejected NAB’s request and sent Maryam and her cousin to jail for 14 days.
Judge Khan also rejected Maryam’s request to sent her to Kot Lakhpath Jail, where her father and three-time former prime minister Nawaz Sharif is also incarcerated since his December 2018 conviction in Al-Azizia corruption case.
Maryam told the court that the Camp Jail lacks facilities for women prisoners. However, the court rejected her request and both the PML-N vice president and her cousin were sent to Camp Jail.
Maryam’s arrest in August came just a day after authorities took former finance minister Miftah Ismail into custody in the LNG terminal case. Maryam was also convicted in the Avenfield reference for seven years. The Islamabad High Court had, however, suspended the sentence and ordered her release.
Maryam is one of the few opposition figures who openly criticise Prime Minister Imran Khan, accusing him of victimising opposition and censoring rallies and press conferences held by her party.
A few months ago, she made public a video which purportedly showed the judge who had convicted her father in a corruption case saying he was blackmailed into delivering a guilty verdict against Nawaz.
During the hearing on Wednesday, NAB prosecutor failed to reply when the judge asked him as to what was Maryam’s date of birth. He rummaged through his files but could not answer. Later, he said he only knew her year of birth which is 1973. Maryam, who was present in the courtroom, came to the rostrum and told the court that her date of birth is October 28, 1973.
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