LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) has on Monday granted bail to Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz in Chaudhry Sugar Mills case.
A two-member bench headed by Justice Ali Baqar Najafi announced the verdict – reserved on October 31 – on Maryam Nawaz’s bail plea. The bail has been granted against two surety bonds worth 10 million apiece. The bench has directed Maryam Nawaz to submit her passport in the LHC.
During the previous hearing, National Accountability Bureau (NAB) prosecutor responded to the arguments recorded by defence lawyer Amjad Pervez and opposed Maryam’s bail in the case, saying that proceedings against her were launched in accordance with the law on a report submitted by the Financial Monitoring Unit in 2018.
“There are chances that the accused could flee the country or go underground if released on bail,” NAB maintained.
Previously, lawyer Amjad Pervez said that money laundering case against his client is baseless and that she was made Chief Executive of Chaudhry Sugar Mills only in papers. NAB had breached law and arrested Maryam in money laundering case despite revealing all the assets in Panama Leaks case, he added.
Earlier, NAB had submitted preliminary investigative report to the LHC stating that PML-N vice-president’s crime is not against one individual but the entire society, and she keeps on obstructing the probe against her. “Yousaf Abbas, accused in Chaudhry Sugar Mills reference, had also tried to escape before”, read the report.
The PML-N leader owned 8,064,000 shares of Sugar Mills, while from 2008 to 2010, she became the owner of 47% shares. Nawaz Sharif and his daughter, Maryam Nawaz, invested in Chaudhry and Shamim Sugar Mills, but both of them did not disclose their investments, the reported added.
On October 24, Maryam Nawaz had filed a plea in LHC requesting the court to release her on bail as her father was unwell and undergoing medical treatment at the hospital.
Maryam Nawaz arrested
On August 8, NAB team had detained Maryam Nawaz outside the Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore for skipping appearance in Chaudhry Sugar Mills due to meeting with her father Nawaz Sharif.
Maryam Nawaz was unable to provide the required details of foreign investment in sugar mills while she was also failed to satisfy the bureau regarding source of income for purchasing the shares. NAB had also claimed that three foreigners had transferred 11000 shares worth millions of rupees on Maryam Nawaz’s name.
On July 19, accountability court had turned down petition of NAB claiming Maryam Nawaz had produced a bogus trust deed in Avenfield reference.
Judge Mohammad Bashir had declared anti-corruption watchdog’s appeal as unmaintainable and ruled that no action can be taken in this regard until the decision of Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Maryam’s petition against the Avenfield properties verdict.
On July 6, 2018, accountability judge Mohammad Bashir had convicted former premier Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz in Avenfield properties reference and sentenced them 10 years and 07 years imprisonment, respectively.
She was arrested and shifted to Adiala jail. Later, in September 2018, and was released from jail after the Islamabad High Court suspended her prison sentence.