ISLAMABAD: The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has barred former president Asif Ali Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur from flying abroad in relation to a money-laundering case, Geo News reported on Monday.
According to sources, the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) co-chairman is among seven suspects placed on the ‘stop-list’ — a provisional list of the FIA barring suspects from flying abroad before they are formally placed on the Exit Control List.
Others placed in the list include Nazli Majeed, Iqbal Khan Noori, Mustafa Zulqarnain and Ali Kamal Majeed.
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has also summoned a meeting over the issue in Lahore today.
The FIA registered a case in Karachi last week over a money laundering scandal of Rs35 billion said to implicate politicians, businessmen and bankers.
On July 6, FIA arrested Stock Exchange of Pakistan chairman Hussain Lawai, considered a close aide of Zardari.
FIA arrests Hussain Lawai in the money-laundering probe
FIA officials maintain that 32 people, including Lawai, are being investigated for laundering billions of rupees through fictitious bank accounts.
The FIA probe
The FIA inquiry started when the financial monitoring unit of the State Bank of Pakistan generated a ‘suspicious transaction report’ in January of this year regarding ten bank accounts.
Sources maintain that over 20 ‘benami’ accounts at a private bank were opened in 2013, 2014 and 2015 from where transactions worth billions of rupees’ were made.
Supreme Court orders to place heads of three banks on ECL in fake accounts case
The amount according to FIA sources is said to be black money gathered from various kickbacks, commissions and bribes. But despite these huge transactions, the bank authorities never reported them to the authorities concerned including FIA.
On Sunday, the Supreme Court ordered to place the names of heads of three private banks involved in the scam on the Exit Control List (ECL).
The order came as Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar took notice of the slow pace of inquiry into the case.
The apex court also summoned seven fake bank account holders and 13 beneficiaries on July 12.