Pakistan's anti-graft body on Sunday announced to approach the Interpol to bring back Opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif's son from the UK to try him in a money laundering case.
An official of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) said on Sunday that the agency would also request the National Crime Agency (NCA) in the UK to provide all possible assistance in deportation of Suleman Shehbaz as per law.
"The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided in principle to bring back accused Suleman Shehbaz from the UK through Interpol as he has been declared a proclaimed offender in money laundering case," the official told PTI.
Even though there is no extradition treaty between Pakistan and the UK, the NAB expressed hope that with the help of the Interpol and the NCA, it will manage to bring Suleman back to face the money laundering case against him.
The Accountability Court in Lahore in October last year had issued arrest warrants against Suleman after NAB declared him a proclaimed offender in a money laundering/illegal assets case.
The NAB alleged that assets worth rupees 3.3 billion had been identified so far as illegally accumulated by Suleman, his elder brother Hamza and their father Shehbaz, who is the president of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and younger brother of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
"The whole Shehbaz family committed massive money laundering in the name of foreign remittances and loans. Hamza received benefits from different family members, including Suleman and sister Rabia, under the garb of gifts," it said.
NAB investigation conducted so far revealed that Suleman and Rabia received foreign remittances in their bank accounts, which were found to be fictitious.
Hamza has been in jail for the last one year in money laundering and income beyond means case.
Reacting to the NAB's decision, PML-N information secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb said, "the truth of the NAB-Niazi alliance is no secret anymore and it's truth (is) known within and outside Pakistan. PML-N, it's leadership, and the Sharif family have braved the world's worst political victimisation by this unholy alliance with resilience and answered every question asked by this vengeful team, with bravery, and evidence."
She said despite rigorous witch-hunt and non-stop persecution and a barrage of accusations for over two years, the NAB-Niazi alliance had not been able to file a single reference against Shehbaz Sharif, Hamza and Suleman.
"Whenever the courts asked for proof, the NAB-Niazi alliance always ran away and could not prove any corruption accusation. Where is the actual file and the proofs of the case of money laundering being alleged against Suleman Shehbaz. The same practice was adopted against Ishaq Dar (former finance minister) and in the end the government had to bite dust and got nothing but embarrassment and shame," Aurangzeb said.
The PML-N spokesperson said these cases against the opposition parties were unilateral, illegal and contrary to the letter and spirit of justice.