KARACHI - The FIA banking court on Tuesday heard arguments in money laundering case by defence counsel, the prosecution will argue in the next hearing to be held on July 26.

Shaukat Hayat Advocate was counseling on behalf of the accused Hussain Lawai and concluded the arguments. He said that his client had never been involved in any fraud and illegal practices. He added that there was no any illegal transaction was proved in the inquiry.  The defence counsel also contended that the case registered against Hussain Lawai is totally baseless, as the prosecution has failed to produce any solid evidence against his client.   The court after hearing final arguments from the defense has directed the FIA prosecutor to submit his arguments in the next hearing.

The court also heard applications seeking provision of better facilities to Mr Lawai and another accused Talha Raza in prison.

The counsel moved applications on behalf of the detained bankers under Rule 248 of the Pakistan Prisons Rules, arguing that his clients were highly educated and had distinguished careers. He added that Hussain Lawai, a 78-year-old banker, had served as president of the Summit Bank from 2008-2016.

The lawyer pleaded the court to direct the prison authorities that B-class facilities be provided to the detained bankers in prison.

Lawai, accused of facilitating the opening of 29 ‘fake’ accounts in Summit Bank, Sindh Bank and United Bank Limited to launder money amounting to Rs35 billion, was presented, along with Raza, before a magistrate by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA). After submitting an initial inquiry report, the FIA team sought further remand to complete the investigation.

According to the FIA prosecutor, the case has made progress, the investigation officer said details of the accounts from which the accused laundered money had been found while an extension in remand was required to investigate further.