‘Arif Naqvi has President Alvi’s number on him, he could flee to Pakistan’

A £2 million (Dh9.48m) bail request by the founder of defunct private equity company Abraaj Group, Arif Naqvi, was rejected by a London magistrate.

The magistrate feared that Arif Naqvi would flee the United Kingdom and seek refuge in Pakistan.

“I’m concerned to see he had the [Pakistan] president’s number on him,” Lady Arbuthnot said. “If he were to be granted bail, I’d be extremely concerned he would leave the country.”

Arif Naqvi was arrested at London’s Heathrow airport for US conspiracy, wire fraud and securities fraud charges. As per authorities, one of the persons he asked to be notified about his arrest was Dr Arif Alvi, the president of Pakistan.

Arif Naqvi is accused of defrauding investors of millions of dollars in the Dubai-based private equity company. He is also accused of inflating assets of Abraaj to hide the company’s liquidity issues while trying to attract $6 billion investment for a venture.

Prosecutor Rachel Kapila said that there was a strong possibility that if provided bail, Naqvi would flee to Pakistan.

“Prosecutors believe he has access to a private jet that will take him to Pakistan,” he said.

The British prosecutor said that since there was no extradition deal between Pakistan and the USA, chances of him being handed over to the USA were slim.

His lawyer, however, denied accusations and said that Mr Naqvi was innocent.

Journalist and Prime Minister Imran Khan’s former wife Reham claims that Arif Naqvi had financed more than 60% of the cricketer-turned-politician’s 2013 general election campaign.

Arif AlviArif NaqviImran KhanlatestPakistanptiReham Khan
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