FIA detains Zardari’s close aide in money laundering scam

KARACHI: The State Bank circle of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has detained Hussain Lawai, who is considered a close aide of PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari over charges of allegedly laundering over Rs25 billion.

Lawai was stopped from flying to Dubai last Tuesday as inquiries against him were underway since 2015. His name, however, was not placed on exit-control list (ECL).

Director of FIA’s Sindh chapter, Munir Sheikh said Lawai, who was also elected as the chairman of the board of Pakistan Stock Exchange in May, was facing charges of laundering money through 29 fake accounts, Express News reported. Employees of the Omni group of industries operated the said accounts, he claimed.

Anwar Majid, the owner of the group who is also one of Zardari’s close friends, had left the country last year after his offices were raided by the FIA in December 2016.

Rangers arrest Zardari’s close aide Ismail Dahiri from Benazirabad

Majid, a Karachi-based businessman, was allegedly involved in transfers and postings of police officers in Sindh Police and believed to be playing a vital role in removing Sindh IG AD Khawaja from his post last year.

The reports of Lawai’s custody came only days after Sindh Rangers arrested former special assistant to the provincial government Ismail Dahiri in a raid on his residence and fuel station in Benazirabad district.

Considered a close aide of former president Zardari, Dairi is an office bearer of PPP’s Nawabshah chapter. The Rangers also rounded up his brother Raza Dahiri among 40 other suspects.

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