From prison to presidency and now back again for Pakistani lawmaker

Former president and PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari center leaves the IHC building in Islamabad on Monday. — AP

Former president and PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari center leaves the IHC building in Islamabad on Monday. — AP

Asif Ali Zardari, the former president of Pakistan, has been arrested in Islamabad over a money laundering case.

National Accountability Bureau (NAB) spokesman Nawazish Ali confirmed that Zardari has been arrested, without giving details.

During the NA session, the house witnessed chaos as opposition surrounded the speaker's dais and chanted slogans against the incumbent government after the Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri allowed Sheikh Rasheed to speak instead of Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.

The charges in the latest case centre around allegations Zardari laundered vast sums of money through suspect bank accounts and companies.

The widower of assassinated former prime minister Benazir Bhutto was held after a bail extension was rejected in a case alleging millions of pounds have been spirited out of the country.

The former president and Talpur have always denied any wrongdoing linked to those cases, which have been described by the PPP as politically motivated.

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It came after a high court rejected extending pre-arrest bail for him and his sister.

Zardari, now a lawmaker in the lower house of Parliament, and his sister, also a politician, have been accused of having dozens of bogus bank accounts.

The two attended the court hearing but were not arrested at the scene.

Mr. Zardari has said on several occasions that he is not afraid of going to jail, that it is like his second home.

Khan, a longtime foe of Zardari, was elected prime minister past year after running a heated campaign vowing to crackdown on corruption.

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