‘Hidden hand’ behind Nawaz Sharif’s conviction: Pak judge who sent him jail

Pakistan: High Court orders removal of judge who convicted Nawaz Sharif after video leak

Malik claimed that in early 2018, an acquaintance named Nasir Janjua, who was associated with the PML-N, "implored" him to issue verdicts of acquittal in the references, saying that it was on his personal recommendation to then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that he (Malik) was appointed as judge in the accountability court.

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday said the "Pakistani mafia" uses various tactics to build pressure on state institutions in order to protect illegal money.

This came days after Maryam Nawaz, Sharif's daughter and opposition leader, claimed the judge - in a secretly videotaped conversation - admitted he convicted Sharif of corruption after being coerced. Legal experts said that a retrial in the corruption case was possible. The accountability judge had also been summoned around three times for questioning. Farooq also instructed the registrar office to write to the law ministry regarding Malik's removal and repatriating him to the parent department, the Lahore High Court, according to Dawn.

The premier's statement has come after the accountability court judge Muhammad Arshad Malik, who is now embroiled in a video controversy, accused the members of Sharif family of offering him Rs100 million as bribe for favorable decisions in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills and Flagship Investment references of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). "The video and all the facts connected to it had been proven to be true", he said, demanding the verdict given against Nawaz Sharif under pressure be declared void. Under Pakistani law, this is taken to prove corruption.

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The Islamabad HC made a decision to remove the judge after he submitted an affidavit in court claiming he was offered bribes and threatened with dire consequences by PML-N representatives initially to force him into issuing verdicts in favour of Sharif in corruption references.

"Judge Arshad Malik was asked to stop working on the basis of the alleged video and the press release", Naseem told a news conference on Friday.

Meanwhile, ousted premier Nawaz Sharif's son, Hussain Nawaz, has rejected judge Malik's claim, saying he did not bribe or threaten the judge.

Following his removal, Pakistanis weighed in on Twitter, using the hashtag #FreeNawazSharif.

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