Nawaz Sharif gets 10-year jail in corruption case

Nawaz Sharif gets 10-year jail in corruption case

Nawaz Sharif gets 10-year jail in corruption case

A Pakistani court on Friday sentenced ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to 10 years in prison for corrupt practices linked to his family's purchase of upscale London flats, in a major blow to his party ahead of general elections on July 25. Nawaz Sharif's son-in-law Safdar was given a year sentence.

The guilty verdict in absentia against Sharif, 68, threatens to end the career of one of Pakistan's most high-profile politicians of the last four decades, a political survivor who was prime minister three times.

"He (Nawaz) chose this path despite being aware that it was not easy and a price for it had to be paid", she said, adding that the PML-N supremo paid a "heavy price" for his decision.

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

"PML-N will not perish politically as it has a strong base in northern Punjab". Sharif's family insisted that they had purchased the apartments with "legitimate" financial resources but were unable to disclose those resources before either the accountability court or the Supreme Court. Imran Khan was adamant to pursue the case for which he held rallies and protests. The graft case also implicated Sharif's sons, Hassan and Hussain.

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The Sharifs had filed an application on Thursday requesting the court to delay the verdict in the Avenfield reference and grant a seven-day exemption in the wake of Nawaz's wife, Begum Kulsoom Nawaz's critical health. He has been declared a proclaimed offender.

1976 - Enters politics, joining the Pakistan Muslim League (PML) after the Sharif family steel business was nationalised under the government of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, the beginning of a long political rivalry between the families. 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.

"If Sharif does not come back, his party is over", said political analyst Rasool Bukhsh Rais.

"I am returning to the country to face the jail and the handcuffs if this is the price I have to pay for loving my country", the former premier said while addressing a news conference flanked by daughter Maryam.

They both denied wrongdoing and are expected to appeal.

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