Nawaz Sharif, daughter Maryam to walk out of jail, sentence suspended

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Pakistan's high court on Wednesday ordered the release of ousted former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter, suspending the sentences they received from an accountability court in July, domestic media said.

The Islamabad High Court suspended the 10-year sentence for Sharif and the seven-year term handed down to his daughter, Maryam, over corrupt practices linked to his family's ownership of upscale London flats.

In Wednesday's decision, the two-judge panel headed by Justice Athar Minallah also ordered that Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Mohammad Safdar, be released once they each post a bond of half a million rupees, or about $4,000.

Sixty-nine days after his return to Pakistan to face ten years behind bars, he emerged from Adiala prison, Rawalpindi, with his daughter Maryam and surrounded by hundreds of supporters.

A supporter of former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif holds his picture and makes a victory sign after a court ruling, outside the Islamabad High Court. The court also directed them to submit bail bonds worth Rs 5 lakh each.

Sharif was briefly released from prison earlier this month to attend the funeral of his wife, Kulsoom Nawaz, who died of cancer in London and was buried in Lahore.

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In the evening, the three were released from the prison, where many party leaders and a large crowd of supporters gathered to receive them, said Sen.

The health condition of the former Pakistan prime minister deteriorated in the jail, following which he was admitted to the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) due to cardiac complications.

The PPP leader criticised the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for what he termed "incompetence" in pleading the case against the court.

Both appealed against the sentences and have denied any wrongdoing.

Sharif was ousted from power past year in July by Pakistan's Supreme Court, after his children were linked to offshore companies in the Panama Papers leaks of 2015.

His supporters believe the real reason he was convicted was because he had fallen out with the country's powerful army. It read, "Truth has come, and falsehood has departed".

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