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Pakistan court adjourns hearing on Imran Khan’s appeal against conviction in Toshakhana case

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The Islamabad High Court on Friday adjourned until August 28 the hearing on the appeal filed by Pakistan’s jailed former prime minister Imran Khan challenging his conviction and sentence by a sessions court in the Toshakhana corruption case.

On August 5, a trial court in Islamabad convicted Khan, 70, in the case filed by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and sentenced him to three years in prison. The verdict meant he was disqualified from contesting general elections for five years.

A division bench comprising IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri presided over Friday’s hearing.

During the hearing, Advocate Amjad Pervaiz, the ECP’s lawyer, was expected to conclude his arguments. However, he failed to appear due to being “extremely unwell” — as stated by a member of his team — following which the IHC adjourned the hearing till August 28 (Monday).

The IHC has been hearing Khan’s appeal since August 22. The court on Thursday adjourned the hearing until Friday.

The defence team has already completed the arguments.

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The Supreme Court also on Thursday decided to halt proceedings on Khan’s plea until the IHC’s decision. The apex court also took everyone by surprise as it ordered Attorney-General for Pakistan (AGP) Mansoor Usman Awan to furnish an official report about the living conditions of Khan by August 28.

The Toshakhana case was filed by ruling party lawmakers in 2022 in the ECP, alleging that Khan concealed the proceeds from the sale of state gifts.

The ECP first disqualified him and then filed a case of criminal proceedings in a sessions court which convicted him and subsequently, Khan was sent to jail.

Khan is currently in Attock Jail where he was lodged after arrest following his conviction. He has also been disqualified for five years.

The case alleges that Khan had “deliberately concealed” details of the gifts he retained from the Toshaskhana – a repository where presents handed to government officials from foreign officials are kept – during his time as the prime minister from 2018 to 2022 and proceeds from their reported sales.

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