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Pak CJ hints at constituting high-power JIT to probe money laundering allegations against Zardari

Press Trust of India  |  Islamabad 

Pakistan's today hinted at constituting a high-power Joint Investigation Team - similar to the one formed in the case against - to probe the money laundering allegations against former and his sister, according to

The (FIA) approached the apex court after Zardari and his sister failed to appear before a joint investigation team probing alleged money laundering of Rs 35 billion through fake accounts, reported.

On August 1, the FIA had issued notices to Zardari and Talpur to appear before the JIT in on Saturday. But the duo did not appear.

During today's hearing by a three-member bench headed by Nisar, Justice said that the money stashed in accounts is illegal. On this the observed that this is black money and the court will not spare anyone, the paper said.

Zardari, Talpur, former Stock Exchange Hussain Lawai, Senior are among those being investigated by a seven-member JIT led by FIA for allegedly facilitating 29 'fake' accounts in Summit Bank, and United Bank Limited.

When Chief Justice Nisar asked for the formation of a JIT, raised objections, the Express Tribune reported.

Responding to Ahsan's query if the trial will be heard by the top court or a lower court, the chief justice said the trial can be conducted in SC as well.

He added the JIT would be formed in a similar fashion to the one formed the in the case as a "balancing act", the paper said.

He also hinted at forming a special court to hear and sought result in a month.

On August 4, in their reply submitted to the apex court, Zardari and Talpur had expressed reservations against Mirza leading the investigation team. The Peoples Party had called for the court to direct the FIA to conduct a fair investigation without any harassment or defamation.

The top urged Zardari and Talpur to appear before the FIA and prove their innocence.

"If they are declared innocent, I will order an FIR against DG FIA and others myself," the chief justice said.

Zardari served as the 11th of from 2008 to 2013. He rose to prominence after his marriage to in 1987.

During the hearing, Chief Justice Nisar remarked that he had been threatened with dire consequences post-retirement. "I am not afraid," he said.

DG FIA Memon told court that the was harassing witnesses as the accused were seeking to dispose the case.

Chiding the provincial police, Chief Justice Nisar directed IG Sindh to probe the matter and submit a report on August 8. The court adjourned hearing until August 13.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, August 06 2018. 17:35 IST