In a money laundering case against several executives of the now liquidated airline, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) launched the process of attachment of assets, including aircraft, to Shaheen Air International (SAI), which emerged on Friday.
According to officials and records checked by Dharti News, the agency filed a case against SAI last year on charges of causing a loss of Rs2.1 billion to the Civil Aviation Authority.
According to FIA Deputy Director Rauf Sheikh, the air carrier also allegedly caused a loss of Rs200 million at Sialkot International Airport. In addition, it reportedly committed a “willful default” of Rs11 billion against the default of Habib Bank Ltd (HBL) and Rs50m against the default of United Bank Ltd. (UBL).
According to the officer, the owners of the airline allegedly founded firms in the United Arab Emirates and used this money to buy properties in Pakistan and abroad.
FIA Sindh Director Munir Ahmed Sheikh indicated that on 13 July 2020, the agency had filed a complaint against SAI CEO Ehsan Khalid Sehbai and eight other directors on charges of misappropriation of the money owed to the CAA.
Subsequently, he said, the suspects allegedly laundered crime proceeds in various bank accounts in Pakistan and abroad and purchased properties using that money.
The officer revealed that the court concerned had given the permission of the FIA to temporarily seize the “money laundering properties” found so far against SAI directors.
The case registered last year against SAI officials was the result of an investigation undertaken by the Karachi FIA Corporate Crime Circle. It was initiated by the CAA on the grounds of a written grievance.
It was reported in the Pakistan Penal Code under sections 406 (criminal breach of trust), 489-F (dishonouring of cheque), 109 (abetment), 34 (common criminal intention), read in Sections 3 & 4 of the AML Act, 2010 (money laundering).
In addition to Ehsan Sehbai, directors Kashif Mahmud, Sabrina Kalsoom Sehbai, Javed Karim, Janet Sehbai, Hoshing P. Sidhwa, Rashida Yasmeen, Yawar Mehmood and Mohammad Wasiq were among the members of the SAI management who were booked in the event.
Last year, one of the directors, Yawar Mehmood Sehbai, was arrested.