Imran Khan, Bushra Bibi sentenced to 14 years in Toshakhana case


ISLAMABAD – An Islamabad accountability court on Wednesday handed down a 14-year jail sentence to former prime minister Imran Khan and his wife, Bushra Bibi, in the Toshakhana graft case.

The hearing, presided over by Accountability Judge Mohammad Bashir, took place at Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail, where the former prime minister is currently detained.

Both individuals have been banned from holding any public office for a decade and have been fined Rs787 million. Notably, Bushra Bibi did not appear in court on the specified day.

The verdict comes a day after a special court, established under the Official Secrets Act, sentenced Imran Khan and his foreign minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, to 10 years in prison in cipher case.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) recently initiated a new reference against the two individuals in an accountability court last month, accusing them of retaining a jewellery set received from the Saudi crown prince at an undervalued assessment.

The judge had previously concluded the cross-examination of prosecution witnesses and instructed Imran Khan and his spouse to provide their statements under Section 342 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

This verdict arrives just eight days before the scheduled February 8 general elections, in which the PTI is participating amidst a state crackdown and without an electoral symbol.

Meanwhile, PTI leader Barrister Gohar Khan termed the Toshakhana verdict as “cruel,” noting that such a decision had never been handed down by the accountability court before.

He alleged that other politicians were being punished solely to appease a certain leader, emphasizing that the court had not permitted cross-examination.

Barrister Gohar announced their intention to file an appeal in the high court against the verdict. He maintained that Bushra Bibi had no involvement in the case since she did not personally accept any gifts.

Toshakhana case

The Toshakhana has come under scrutiny following allegations that Imran Khan, during his tenure as prime minister from 2018 to 2022, acquired gifts received in his official capacity at nominal prices and subsequently sold them for substantial profits.

The 70-year-old former cricketer, now a politician, faced accusations of misusing his position to purchase and sell gifts belonging to the state, received during official visits abroad, with a total value exceeding Rs140 million ($635,000).

These gifts included watches presented by a royal family, purportedly sold by Khan’s associates in Dubai.

Following a reference forwarded by National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf, the Election Commission initiated an inquiry into the matter. Subsequently, the electoral body found the former prime minister culpable of corrupt practices and lodged a complaint in an Islamabad court.

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