An anti-corruption court sentenced Former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to seven years in prison in Al Azizia graft case. After the verdict was announced the former prime minister was arrested from the courtroom.
The court acquitted PML (N) leader in the Flagship reference, Panama Papers scandal, but imposed a fine of Rs1.5 billion. Hassan Nawaz and Hussain Nawaz, his sons, were declared absconders.
The National Accountability Bureau initiated the Flagship Investment case and the Al-Azizia case on Sept. 8, 2017, following a judgment by the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case that disqualified Nawaz Sharif in July, 2017.
The court accepted application of Nawaz Sharif for imprisonment in Kot Lakhpat jail in Lahore.
The former premier had reached the court premises along with senior PML (N) leaders. Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Raja Zafarul Haq, Maryam Aurangzeb and Hamza Shehbaz were among others present outside the court premises.
Speaking to the media, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, former premier and senior party leader, said, the verdict was announced behind closed doors, it should have been announced openly.
He said, they will protest against the verdict, adding, the PML (N) leader should have been acquitted in both references as there was no evidence against the Sharif family.
He also said the party will survive the trying times as they braved the era of former president Pervez Musharraf.
At least 1,400 security personnel were deployed in and around the court premises.
A large number of PML (N) supporters were present and were barred from moving towards the accountability court by security personnel.
Following the verdict announcement, party supporters clashed with the security personnel. Tear gas and baton-charge was used to disperse the protesters.