The anti-corruption court in Pakistan on Monday sentenced ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif to seven years in prison in Al-Azizia case.
The verdict was delivered by Judge Muhammad Arshad Malik of Islamabad-based accountability court after completion of the hearing last week. However, Sharif was acquited in the Flagship Investment case.
On Sunday, Sharif had said that he has done nothing that would force him to bow his head. “(I) have always served the country and this nation with absolute honesty,” he said
A large number of Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supporters and senior party leaders were present outside the court to show their support for the party’s supreme leader.
Security has been beefed up around the judicial complex, with heavy contingents of police and Rangers deployed around the building and along roads leading to the court.
The apex court initially set six month deadline to conclude the cases but it subsequently increased around eight times on the request of the accountability court.
Sharif was disqualified by the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case in July, 2017.
In July, 2018 Sharif, his daughter Maryam and his son-in-law retired captain Mohammad Safdar were sentenced to 11 years, eight years and one year respectively in prison in the Avenfield properties case related to their purchase of four luxury flats in London through corrupt practices. However, the three were bailed out by the Islamabad High Court in September.