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‘Maqsood Chaprasi’s death won’t affect money laundering case’

Farooq Bajwa says Maqsood was not a witness but a co-accused in Rs16bn money laundering case

Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Special Prosecutor Farooq Bajwa on Thursday said the death of Malik Maqsood Ahmad, frequently referred to as Maqsood ‘Chaprasi’, would not have any negative impact on the money laundering case against Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, his son Hamza Shehbaz and others.

“Maqsood Chaprasi was not a witness but was an accused in the case,” Bajwa said while responding to questions of reporters.

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Maqsood – who had been declared guilty in the case by the FIA and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) – died of cardiac arrest in Dubai on June 6.

Special Court Central-I and an accountability court have been hearing the money laundering case against Maqsood Chaprasi and others for long. The court had issued non-bailable arrest warrants of Maqsood, while the accountability court had declared him a proclaimed offender. The FIA had in December 2021 submitted a challan against Shehbaz and Hamza to a special court for their alleged involvement in laundering an amount of Rs16 billion in the sugar scam case.

“The investigation team has detected 28 benami accounts of the Shehbaz family through which money laundering of Rs16.3bn was committed during 2008-18. The FIA examined the money trail of 17,000 credit transactions,” according to an FIA report submitted in court. The amount was kept in “hidden accounts” and given to Shehbaz Sharif in a personal capacity, the report claimed. This amount had nothing to do with the sugar business of the Shehbaz family, the FIA had alleged. The money received from the accounts of low-wage employees by Shehbaz was transferred outside Pakistan via hundi/hawala networks, ultimately destined for the beneficial use of his family members, the FIA alleged.

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