UK Crime Agency Arrests Politically Exposed Pakistani and Wife Over Alleged Money Laundering
SEP 17, 2018: The United Kingdom’s National Crime Agency on Monday announced it has “arrested a former Pakistani politically exposed person”, aged 40, along with his 30-year-old wife, “in connection with alleged money laundering in the United Kingdom believed to be the result of corruption in Pakistan”.
According to a statement issued by the UK’s agency, the couple, who were arrested in Surrey [county in southeastern England], “control a UK property portfolio worth more than £8 million for which they appear to have no legitimate source of income”.
The investigation which led to the arrest of the Pakistani couple by NCA’s International Corruption Unit was “supported by the National Accountability Bureau and the Federal Investigation Agency in Pakistan,” read the statement.
“The man and his wife were questioned by NCA officers and have now been released (but) under investigation.”
According to local media reports, Farhan Junejo, a former assistant commissioner, who was accused of laundering Rs250 million abroad was arrested along with his wife by NCA officials.
Junejo was a close aide of late PPP leader Makhdoom Amin Fahim and was named in Trade Development Authority corruption scandal.
He was accused of causing a loss of Rs1.5 billion to the national exchequer.
The former public office holder and wife had fled to London to invest money there.
The International Corruption Unit, which is principally funded by the Department for International Development (DfID) of UK investigates serious criminal allegations of bribery and corruption.
This includes bribery committed either by a UK-based person or company to gain commercial advantage overseas, or the investigation of money laundering in the UK committed by foreign “Politically Exposed Persons”.
Earlier on Monday, Law Minister Dr Farogh Naseem and British Home Secretary Sajid Javid jointly announced a justice and accountability ‘initiative’ between the UK and Pakistan aimed at repatriating “the looted wealth of the country”.
The initiative — which the duo said will not target individuals but is a broader arrangement between the two governments to collaborate for the elimination of a variety of crimes — was launched during the British home secretary’s official visit to Islamabad on Monday.
Mr. Sajid Javid, UK’s Home Secretary, said, “When it comes to corrupt individuals, we have deepened our cooperation. The UK is not reluctant in helping Pakistan, there is good cooperation between the two countries.”
“Tackling corruption is a priority for both our governments. That is why today I am launching a new UK-Pakistan partnership on justice and accountability.” the British Home Secretary said.