ISLAMABAD: A two members’ bench of Islamabad High Court is all set to take up former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s plea for suspension of his conviction in Al-Azizia reference today.
The division bench is comprised Chief Justice Athar Minallah and senior puisne judge Justice Aamer Farooq.
The ex-PM’s legal team had last week filed the petition as well as an appeal against his conviction in the Al-Azizia reference. Earlier the IHC registrar office had raised some administrative objections to the petition twice and returned it.
However, on last Saturday the petition was filed by the defence team after removing the objections.
Accountability court judge Mohammad Arshad Malik had on Dec 24, 2018 convicted Mr Sharif in the Al-Azizia reference. The court had handed down him seven years imprisonment, besides imposing a fine of Rs1.5 billion and $25 million.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has also filed appeals in the IHC, seeking enhancement of Mr Sharif’s sentence from seven to 14 years. NAB has also challenged Mr Sharif’s acquittal in the Flagship Investment reference.
The Supreme Court had on July 28, 2017, while deciding petitions of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed and other political leaders, disqualified Mr Sharif and directed NAB to file three references — Avenfield Properties, Al-Azizia and Flagship Investment — against Mr Sharif and other members of his family in the accountability court.
Accountability court judge Mohammad Bashir had on July 6, 2018 convicted Mr Sharif in the Avenfield reference and sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
However, an IHC division bench comprising Chief Justice Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb suspended the sentence in the Avenfield reference.
NAB has filed an appeal against the suspension of the sentence, which is pending adjudication before the Supreme Court.