Nawaz Sharif, daughter, son-in-law's jail sentences suspended in corruption case

Justice Mohammad Arshad Malik conducted hearing of the case

Justice Mohammad Arshad Malik conducted hearing of the case

A Pakistani court on Wednesday ordered the release of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter, suspending their prison sentences pending an appeal hearing, his lawyer said.

The Pakistani court suspended the prison sentences of Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law and set them free on bail pending their appeal hearings.

The Bench ordered their release and directed them to submit bail bonds worth Rs.0.5 million each.

It is pertinent here to mention that former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz and Captain Safdar were convicted and sentenced to prison in absentia for ten years, seven years and one year respectively, in Avenfield verdict.

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The trio were briefly allowed out of the high-security Adiala Jail on parole to attend her funeral.

Former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif, centre, arrives to attend the funeral prayer of his late wife Kulsoom Nawaz in Lahore on September 14, 2018.

"Soon after the news spread, supporters of the former prime minister and his daughter Mariam Nawaz danced in the streets, distributed candies and chanted slogans", NPR's Diaa Hadid reports from Karachi.

On Wednesday, a division bench comprising of the high court suspended the father-daughter's sentence. The convoy moved at a slow pace as the route was crowded with supporters and workers of PML-N, who took to the streets to celebrate the release of their leader.

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Apart from the Avenfield case, the Sharifs face jail terms if they are convicted in two more corruption cases related to Al-Azizia and Flagship cases. The court also orders the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to open a criminal trial into ownership of the London flats along with several other Panama Papers revelations.

The case stemmed from the Panama Papers leak that disclosed expensive and undeclared property owned by the Sharif family in London.

Senior anchorperson Abdul Moiz Jafferii said that only the sentences of the Sharif family have been suspended, but they haven't been freed as such.

Sharif was disqualified from office by the country's Supreme Court a year ago over corruption allegations. "Truth has come, and falsehood has departed".

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