Wednesday, November, 29,2023

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Pakistan: Court issues bailable arrest warrant for Moonis Elahi in money laundering case

Islamabad: A local court in Lahore on Saturday issued a bailable arrest warrant for Pakistan's former federal minister and Pakistan Tehreek Insaaf (PTI) leader Moonis Elahi in a case related to money laundering, Pakistan-based Geo News reported. 
The order issued by Special Court (Central-I), Lahore judge Justice Abdul Sattar Langah reads, "In the interest of justice, the instant application moved by the police officer is accepted and the bailable warrant of arrest of Rs100,000 is issued against the accused Monis Elahi, under Section 90 (a) CrPC for the date fixed i.e. 11/10/2023." 
The special court issued the arrest warrant for Moonis Elahi, who has been living abroad for the past couple of months over over non-compliance with the summons issued by the court.
During the hearing on Saturday, the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) investigation officer told the court that the suspect was avoiding receiving the summons, according to Geo News report. 
The FIA in a written statement presented in the court said that the report regarding the service of summons of  “accused Moonis Elahi s/o Parvaiz Elahi to the extent of his address in England has been received through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and the same is annexed with the application."
The FIA further said, "As per reports regarding service of summons in the name of accused Moonis Elahi s/o Pervaiz Elahi through MOFA of his address in Spain it was reported that nobody was available on those addresses." According to FIA, the report received from FIA found that the accused avoided receiving the summons. 
The FIA requested the court to issue an arrest warrant for Moonis considering the report received from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the service of summons. Subsequently, the Lahore court gave approval to the FIA’s request and issued a bailable arrest warrant for Moonis Elahi. 
According to the FIR, an investigation began against Moonis Elahi under the Money Laundering Act in 2020. The FIR said that the Sugar Commission's report said that Moonis Elahi was allegedly involved in money laundering, Geo News reported. 
Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan had asked the FIA to probe the sugar crisis throughout the country and find out who benefited from it. Subsequently, FIA's report revealed that top PTI members and Moonis Elahi were among those who had allegedly benefited from the sugar crisis in Pakistan.
According to FIA sources, "sufficient evidence" had been collected against Moonis Elahi after which the agency decided to formally begin an investigation against him, according to Geo News report. Moonis Elahi left for Spain in December 2022 and he continues to reside there "to avoid political victimisation in the country," Geo News reported citing media reports.
Earlier this week, an accountability court in Lahore issued non-bailable arrest warrants for PTI leader Moonis Elahi for allegedly receiving kickbacks in development projects. The judge issued the non-bailable arrest warrants for Moonis Elahi after the request of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

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