Pakistan formally asks US for extradition of Hamesh Khan

Pakistan has formally asked the US for extradition of prime accused in Bank of Punjab corruption case former Bank President Hamesh Khan.

US embassy spokesman has confirmed that he has received a letter from the Pakistan Foreign Office in this regard.

Hamesh Khan was allegedly involved in Rs 9 billions fraud, but he fled from the country in June this year despite his name being on the Exit Control List (ECL) of the Interior Ministry.

Embassy spokesman Richard Snelsire told that he received a letter from the Pakistan Foreign office on Sunday night asking for extradition of the former president of Bank of Punjab Hamesh Khan the foreign office has also asked that Hamesh Khan be taken into custody.

The letter has assured that Hamesh Kahn would be treated fairly and would not be tortured and with this guarantee we are forwarding the letter to the US justice department for further action, spokesman said.

The US Embassy in Pakistan has already warned that Hamesh Khan would possibly be released on May 14 by the American authorities if Islamabad fails to timely convey to Washington its assurance for fair handling of the former Bank of Punjab president after his extradition to Pakistan. Hamesh Khan lost his case on March 14 in a Virginia court, which ordered his extradition to Pakistan.

However, later following Hamesh’s appeal, Washington approached Islamabad to ensure that Khan would not be tortured and maltreated, and dealt fairly. The US Embassy approached the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on April 26, seeking the same assurance from the Government of Pakistan, which after 12 days is now being conveyed to the US authorities.

The Supreme Court of Pakistan had already directed the federal government to arrest or have arrested, the former President of Bank of Punjab Hamesh Khan, who is said to be involved in billions of rupees of fraud case.

On the directives of Supreme Court of Pakistan, a special team of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has already arrested main culprits of PunjabBank Fraud case, Sheikh Muhammad Afzal with his son Haris Afzal of Haris Steel Mills through the use of Interpol from Kuala-Lumpur, capital of Malaysia on November 16.

Other suspects industrialist Seth Yaqoob and his daughter Irum Yaqoob have also been detained and their assets frozen.

FO sources told that Pakistan has fulfilled all the legal requirements for Hamesh Kahn extradition.

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