General

NAB files supplementary reference in Avenfield case

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) filed in the accountability court on Monday a supplementary reference against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and four others in the Avenfield properties case.
Nawaz and his family face three references pertaining to the Azizia Steel Mills and Hill Metals Establishment, their London (Avenfield) properties, and over a dozen offshore companies, including Flagship Investment Ltd.
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NAB informed the judge that the new supplementary reference which has fresh pieces of evidence against the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader includes seven new prosecution witnesses, including two from the United Kingdom.
Forensic expert Robert Radley and a close relative of Panama case Joint Investigative Team head, Federal Investigation Agency Additional Director Wajid Zia, will be the witnesses in the case, while two other witnesses are affiliated with the Ministry of Information.
NAB informed that it has taken the initial statement from the witnesses based in the UK.
The apex anti-corruption watchdog said that one of the witnesses belongs to a private media channel, while two others work under NAB.
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Moreover, it also informed the court that excerpts of TV interviews of Nawaz, Maryam, Hasan and Hussain are part of the evidence.
The Avenfield reference pertains to the Park Lane apartments (flats 16, 16-A, 17 and 17-A Avenfield House, Park Lane, London, United Kingdom), of the Sharif family and includes Nawaz, his three children, and son-in-law MNA Capt (retd) Safdar as accused.
Hasan and Hussain have been declared proclaimed offenders for not being a part of the proceedings.
In its July 28 judgment, the Supreme Court had stated: “In preparing and filing this Reference, the NAB shall also consider the material already collected during the course of investigations conducted earlier, as indicated in the detailed judgments,” the court ruled.
The Supreme Court had also given NAB the option to file supplementary reference(s) “if and when any other asset, which is not prima facie reasonably accounted for, is discovered”.