Pakistan court drops Bhutto corruption charges

[JURIST] A judge on one of Pakistan's anti-corruption Accountability Courts [official backgrounder] Tuesday dismissed charges against former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto [BBC obituary; JURIST news archive] following her December 27 assassination [JURIST report]. Charges that Bhutto possessed assets beyond her known income, brought by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) [official website], were rejected in light of her death. Corruption charges against Bhutto's former Director General of the Federal Investigation Agency [official website] Rehman Malik will be revisited on January 30 as the NAB responds to a motion to close the case.

Bhutto left Pakistan in 1999 under the cloud of corruption allegations after her government collapsed; in January 2006, international arrest warrants [JURIST report] were issued for Bhutto and her husband Asif Ali Zardari [BBC profile] on unspecified corruption charges stemming from her term in office from the late 1980s to the early 1990s. In October 2007, Bhutto returned to Pakistan after nine years of self-exile when Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf signed a "reconciliation ordinance" granting amnesty to Bhutto on the corruption charges in an attempt to boost his waning popularity. That ordinance was challenged in the Pakistani Supreme Court [JURIST report], and Bhutto was expected to again face the corruption charges. PTI has more.



 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.