ISLAMABAD: The accountability court hearing corruption cases against the Sharif family ordered on Tuesday the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) to freeze the assets of Hussain and Hasan Nawaz, sons of ousted premier Nawaz Sharif.
As the hearing against the brothers, whose trial in the high-profile corruption case has been separated from other family members’ owing to their continued absence, went under way, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) submitted a report detailing assets owned by Nawaz’s sons in Pakistan.
NAB said in its report that according to the SECP, Hasan and Hussain own shares in six companies.
The court then directed the SECP to freeze their shares and ordered both accused to appear in court by November 8 — failure to do so would result in them being declared proclaimed offenders.
The hearing was then adjourned until November 14.
The next hearing of Nawaz, his daughter Maryam and son-in-law Capt (retd) Safdar is on November 3.
The accountability court is hearing a total of three corruption cases against the Sharif family filed by NAB in light of the Supreme Court’s judgment in the Panama Papers case.
Hasan and Hussain are accused in all three references: Avenfield properties, Azizia Steel Mills and Hill Metals Establishment, and Flagship Investment Ltd.
At an earlier hearing on October 9, Judge Mohammad Bashir had accepted NAB’s plea to declare Hussain and Hasan proclaimed offenders and separated their proceedings in the three references filed against them.
Their non-bailable arrest warrants, issued at the last hearing on October 2, remained in effect
The judge directed for initiating the process of declaring them proclaimed offenders. This involved publication of notices in newspapers directing the accused to appear in court. Failure to do so would result in seizure of property and issuance of further warrants.
On October 12, proclamations against the two were posted in the accountability court and a day earlier, on the main gate of the Sharif family’s residences in Jati Umra and Model Town, Lahore.
Sources in NAB Rawalpindi had said the action was taken in light of the accountability court’s directions for the initiation of the process to declare them proclaimed offenders, as they failed to show up in the court’s last hearing.
Both the respondents were directed to appear before the court within 30 days, starting from October 11.
The order also mentioned that the properties of the accused may be seized at any given time.
Both Sharif sons are reportedly in London along with their father where their mother, Kulsoom Nawaz, is undergoing treatment for lymphoma.
Hasan is a permanent resident of London whereas Hussain too is a non-resident Pakistani.