A Lahore court has extended the interim bail for PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif and his son Hamza Shahbaz in a money laundering case. Shehbaz and his son, Hamza, are facing Rs25 billion money laundering charges in the sugar scandal. The FIA had booked them in the case under sections of the Pakistan Penal Code, the Prevention of Corruption Act and Anti-Money Laundering Act in November 2020. During the hearing at a banking crimes court Saturday, Federal Investigation Agency Director Dr Rizwan said that the investigation of the Sugar Inquiry Commission revealed that the Ramzan Sugar Mills, owned by the Sharif family, opened accounts in the name of staff members. “The money in those accounts was circulated in a way to make it look like everyday business transactions,” he revealed. So far, 27 accounts have been opened in the name of 20 employees and more than 55,000 transactions have taken place through them. The court inquired if the FIA has completed its investigation into the case and how much more time it wanted. “For us to complete the inquiry, cooperation is required from the accused men, which is not happening. They [Shehbaz and Hamza] remained unaware of the entire corruption throughout the questioning,” the FIA director replied. When the judge asked about the progress of the inquiry, the FIA official told the court that the probe was initiated in 2020, when the involvement of the sugar mafia was unearthed in the case. He said the FIA found that 57 fake accounts had been opened in the names of 20 of the mill’s employees. Dismissing the allegations made by the agency, Shehbaz said, “We have provided the FIA all the records from day one and submitted answers to a questionnaire sent by the agency.” The PMLN president added: “During my tenure as the chief minister of Punjab, the price of sugar was the lowest across the country. My sugar mills suffered losses. I imposed excise duties and taxes on my family’s mills through which the excise and tax department earned a profit worth Rs2.5 billion.” Shehbaz alleged that the FIA is misrepresenting facts in court. After hearing arguments from both parties, the court extended Shehbaz and Hamza’s interim bail till October 9 and instructed them to cooperate with the FIA during investigation. NAB has accused Shehbaz Sharif of money laundering and owning more assets than his known sources of income.