Nawaz Sharif jailed for 10 years in corruption case

Security personnel have been deployed at the accountability court today. ─ DawnNewsTV

However, the plea was dismissed and the verdict was announced in their absence. Sharif and his daughter are in London, where Sharif's wife Begum Kulsoom is undergoing treatment.

Apart from Nawaz, Maryam and Safdar, Nawaz's sons are also accused in the case.

Nawaz further said that he will continue his political struggle from behind bars, and urged the people to "break the chains by exercising their right to vote on July 25". The court has ordered confiscation of the properties. A Joint Investigation Team, constituted by a three-member Apex court bench to probe and prosecute the accused, produced 18 witnesses who were cross-examined by the defense counsel.

"Justice has been massacred", Maryam's husband Safdar said after the verdict.

According to media reports, Sharif and Maryam were in their apartment in the Avenfield building in London when the decision was announced. Additionally, Nawaz's son-in-law Capt (retd) Safdar has been given a one year sentence without any fine. The two sons never appeared before the court and were declared as absconders. The roads leading to the complex have also been closed to the general traffic.

In a reaction to the court verdict, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)'s Jahangir Khan Tareen wrote on his social media account, "NS (Nawaz Sharif)'s fabricated narrative that he got ousted only for holding an Iqama, has been torn to shreds after NAB Court's historic verdict".

Sharif and his daughter Maryam have made several trips back and forth from London to attend the hearings and attend to the ailing Kulsoom.

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The court verdict enraged Sharif's die-hard supporters.

Sharif's 44-year-old daughter and co-accused Maryam was also given seven years for abetment, and one year for non-cooperation with the anti-corruption bureau - also to run concurrently.

The court has also ruled that the Avenfield apartments of the Sharif family, in their possession since 1993, shall be seized by the federal government.

Khan was a driving force behind Sharif's downfall, seizing on the 2016 Panama Papers' revelations that the then-prime minister's family had bought the London apartments using offshore companies.

Sharif rejected any wrongdoings and insisted they were bought with the legitimate money.

The conviction means Maryam Sharif will be disqualified from contesting the elections.

Pakistan's deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday said he has been punished because he tried to turn the course of Pakistan's 70-year history.

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