International News

Explainer: Why Nawaz Sharif is being investigated in the Panama Papers case

The Pakistan prime minister will appear before a Joint Investigation Team in Islamabad today.

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will appear before a Joint Investigation Team in Islamabad on Thursday in connection with the Panama Papers investigations into his family’s wealth and assets. Sharif is the first sitting Pakistani prime minister to appear before an investigating panel.

The case is about alleged money laundering by Sharif in 1990s to purchase assets in London. Sharif and his children have denied any wrongdoing in the matter. The prime minister is requited to reply to 13 questions raised by the Supreme Court.

Earlier events:

April 4, 2016: Documents leaked from the Panama-based Mossack Fonseca law firm show that Sharif’s daughter, Maryum Nawaz, and his two sons owned offshore companies registered in the British Virgin Islands and used them to buy properties in London.

November 1, 2016: The Supreme Court of Pakistan orders an investigation against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his family in connection with the Panama Papers revelations.

April 20, 2017: The Supreme Court rules there is insufficient evidence to remove Sharif from power over corruption allegations made by the Opposition. The court directs the government to set up a joint investigation team (JIT) to probe the allegations and find within 60 days if the prime minister is guilty.

May 5, 2017: Pakistan’s Supreme Court sets up a high-level six-member Joint Investigation Team to inquire into the alleged corruption in the Panama Papers case.

May 28, 2017: Nawaz Sharif’s son Hussain Nawaz is interrogated by the JIT for close to two hours.

June 12, 2017: The JIT summons Sharif to appear before it on June 15.

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