DUBAI - Prominent Pakistani businessman Haji Abdul Razzak Yaqoob, Chairman of the Dubai-based ARY Group, has been acquitted by the Special Court (Offences in Banks) in Karachi in two cases of bank fraud of a total of $10 million giving him the benefit of doubt.
The court also acquitted Hussain Moosa Lawai, ex-president of Muslim Commercial Bank (MCB) and a well-known banker in Dubai, in the two cases. In its judgment, the court observed that the prosecution failed to furnish significant and material evidence and the available testimony has created doubts.
In one case, Lawai and Abdul Razzak were accused of fraud, breach of trust and causing wrongful loss of $10 million to the MCB. According to the prosecution, $5 million was credited in the account of ARY International Exchange Company in Dubai on verbal instructions of Lawai being president of MCB in February 1995 without any consideration or facility and both the accused caused loss of $5million to the bank.
In the other case, they were charged with preparing two forged sub-underwriting agreements, with an absconding co-accused, and using them as genuine for the placement of five million Pakistan Telecommunication Limited vouchers that were granted to the MCB in September 1994, thus misappropriating $5 million.
The cases were reopened following the Supreme Court’s judgment on the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) that declared withdrawal of all cases under the said ordinance as unlawful and ordered reopening of the cases as they were on October 5, 2007.
In its judgment regarding remittance of $5 million to ARY International Exchange Company, the court observed that prosecution’s entire evidence was based on hearsay conjectures and probabilities.
The court observed in its judgment in the other case that “it is apparent that that bank has not suffered the loss on the sale of PTCL vouchers but earned massive profit on the sale of PTCL vouchers and obviously the accused Lawai is not beneficiary from the alleged transaction nor he received any commission.”
The court added that from the evidence of prosecution witnesses it does not appear that illegal payment was received by Haji Abdul Razzak but such transaction was completed as per terms and conditions which was executed by the bank.