The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has arrested a suspect — said to be a religious scholar — wanted in a Modaraba scam worth over Rs7 billion from the United Arab Emirates through Interpol, the bureau's spokesperson said on Sunday.
“An accused, Mufti Abdullah Shaukat, has been arrested by NAB through Interpol from the UAE,” the official said.
The suspect was wanted in a corruption reference regarding a Modaraba scam whereby a man named Shafiqur Rehman had cheated the public at large by collecting Rs7.2bn under false promises of investment and profits.
The Ponzi scheme was run by a well-organised syndicate of 12 alleged criminals in Karachi who had been successful in defrauding around a hundred innocent people.
“The arrested accused, Mufti Abdullah Shaukat, was wanted for issuing a 'false fatwa' in favour of the main accused, Shafiqur Rehman, illegally declaring his business as legal and legitimate under Islamic laws,” said the NAB official.
The suspect had "graduated from Jamia Binoria in Karachi", an official statement issued by the bureau said.
In December last year, NAB chairman retired Justice Javed Iqbal had said that the bureau was trying its best to apprehend 34 culprits involved in Modaraba/Musharaka scandals and repatriate absconders from abroad through Interpol.
His statement had come after an accountability court convicted Fayazi Group of Industries CEO Mufti Ehsanul Haq and nine others in a major Modaraba case.
The court handed Haq a sentence of 10 years' imprisonment and Rs9bn in fines while a fine of Rs1bn was imposed on the other accused, which is the maximum conviction secured in the history of NAB.