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Maryam Nawaz, Capt Safdar acquitted in Avenfield reference


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IHC order reserved verdict, says prosecution failed to present any evidence

ISLAMABAD:-The Islamabad High Court (IHC) acquitted on Thursday Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz and her husband Captain (retired) Muhammad Safdar in the Avenfield Reference.

The decision was announced by a two-member bench of the IHC comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani.

The court observed that the prosecution could not present any evidence to prove the allegations.

The court declared the sentences awarded by the accountability court null and void.

Later on, speaking to the media outside the court, Maryam Nawaz said that during the hearing, she saw a reversal of all that had happened in the past four years.

She said that the verdict also acquits PML-N supremo, deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif. She added that in the history of Pakistan, no prime minister had faced such a massive anti-graft probe as Nawaz Sharif.

Maryam added that when the cases were filed, Nawaz was adamant that he and his entire family will present themselves for the accountability.

She called out Imran Khan for leveling false allegations against her and her family and that now he would have to answer for it.

You have been proven to be a foreign-funded schemer who spread falsehoods and chaos in the country damaging national security.

In response to a question, she asked who was the beneficiary of the case and that he was part of the conspiracy to remove Nawaz from the Prime Minister’s Office.

She added that those who were his coaches, their time is up too.

At the last hearing, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had told the court that Maryam Nawaz has no role in the purchase of Avenfield apartments.

Avenfield case

In July 2018, an Islamabad accountability court sentenced Nawaz Sharif to 10 years in prison and a fine of eight million pounds was imposed on him in a case linked to the Sharif family’s purchase of upscale London flats.

It said the Sharifs could not legitimately show the money trail for the purchase of the luxury properties in London, mostly in the mid-1990s. A copy of the verdict said the Sharif family had failed to prove a legal source of income for the purchase of the Avenfield apartments.

The verdict came as a serious blow to PML-N’s troubled campaign ahead of the 2018 General Elections.

Consequently, Nawaz filed an appeal in the Islamabad High Court against the judgement. It was, however, dismissed. Nawaz and his son Hussain Nawaz Sharif were declared proclaimed offenders in the case and arrest warrants were issued against them.

The PML-N founder’s daughter Maryam Nawaz and Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar were accused in the case as well. Maryam has been sentenced to seven years in prison and a fine of two million pounds has been imposed on her. Safdar has, on the other hand, been given a punishment of a year in prison.


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