General

Zardari appears before banking court in money laundering case

Former president and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari appeared on Friday before a local banking court in connection to a money laundering case.
Zardari was accompanied by his counsel Farooq Naik.
On August 17, the local banking court had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Zardari and other absconding suspects in the ongoing probe.
However, on August 18, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) approved the former president’s petition for protective bail in the case and ordered him to appear before the relevant court before September 3.
Ahead of Zardari’s arrival, a bomb disposal squad scanned the court premises and gave the clearance.
The FIA is investigating 32 people in relation to money laundering from fictitious accounts, including Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur. Zardari’s close aide Hussain Lawai was arrested in July in connection with the probe.
The former president’s other close aide and Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed and his son, Abdul Ghani, were also arrested by FIA earlier this month. Majeed’s three other sons have been granted interim bail.
Over 20 ‘benami’ accounts at some private banks were opened in 2013, 2014 and 2015 from where transactions worth billions of rupees were made, according to sources.
The amount, according to FIA sources, is said to be black money gathered from various kickbacks, commissions and bribes.