LAHORE: An accountability court in Lahore on Wednesday ordered the authorities to freeze properties of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif and his family. In the ruling, the confirmed the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Lahore’s orders to freeze properties owned by Shehbaz Sharif, his sons Hamza Shehbaz and Salman Shehbaz, and other family members in connection with an investigation involving them in the income beyond means and money laundering cases.
Accountability Court Administrative Judge Ameer Khan in his detailed judgement noted that the Shehbaz family members nominated in the case have been accused of retaining assets beyond their ostensible means and the proportion of their wealth from 2003 to 2018 prima facie “is not proportionate to the known sources of the accused which has not been explained by the accused”. “At this stage, even the provisions of the protection of Economic Reforms Act, 1992, would not be helpful to the accused party unless the sources of the said payments [are] disclosed by them,” the judgement states.
It says the NAB freezing orders against the Shehbaz family are also supported by the statements given by approvers namely Muhammad Mushtaq alias Cheeni, Yasir Mushtaq, Shahid Rafique and Aftab Mehmood.
While confirming the freezing orders, the court has stated that the Shehbaz family members have 14 days to file objections against the orders.
The court’s confirmation of NAB orders means that Shehbaz and his family members can neither sell their assets nor will the profits gained from the family’s properties go to them, according to NAB Special Prosecutor Hafiz Asadullah.