British Forensic Audit: Nawaz Sharif Family Owns Assets Worth $820.8 Million

Forensic audit of Nawaz Sharif family's assets has put its value at $820.8 Million, according to Broadsheet Award ordered by arbitrator Sir Anthony Evans. It was disclosed in documents released by Broadsheet LLC and Pakistan government. The forensic audit was conducted by Stroz Friedberg audit firm based in the United Kingdom. It was hired by Facebook to conduct forensic audit of Cambridge Analytica, the analytics firm used by US President Donald Trump during the 2016 election.

Broadsheet Arbitration Award 


Broadsheet LLC, incorporated in the Isle of Mann, was hired by Pakistan National Accountability Bureau (Bureau) in Year 2000 to uncover overseas assets hidden by over 200 Pakistanis including former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his family. Pakistan was forced to go into arbitration for breach of contract with the firm.  Here are the key excerpts of the final award dated December 17, 2018:

"Stroz Friedberg was instructed to carry out a ‘forensic audit’ (or ‘inventory’) of the (Pakistan) JIT Report. This consisted of identifying potentially recoverable assets of the Sharif Family that were referred to in it and ascribing a valuation to each. This resulted in a list of 76 items of property in three overseas jurisdictions, namely, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and the United Kingdom, as well as in Pakistan, with total values that were corrected in the Revised SF Report to take account of Mr. Bezant’s comments on it. The revised total was US$820.8 million. The third instruction was “to apply the 20% rate due Broadsheet as outlined in the ARA” – a mechanical application of the 20% rate provided four in the ARA clause 4 – which resulted in a total ‘Loss of Revenue’ for Broadsheet of US$164.2 million. The fourth was to establish a ‘borrowing rate of interest’ for each of the 76 items of loss and to apply it from what they considered was the appropriate date. The interest calculation increased the total of ‘Broadsheet’s Entitlement’ to US$304.6 million". 

"The 2017/8 proceedings, however, in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, including the JIT Investigation and Report, have produced a very different situation where (subject to pending appeals) there is an authoritative listing of personal and family assets totalling (as corrected) US$820 million, both in Pakistan and abroad, and where certain real property in the United Kingdom valued at US$13 million (“the Avenfield flats”) has been forfeited to the Pakistan State as having been acquired with corrupt assets. These call for separate consideration in this Award".

"As stated above, the total value of assets both in Pakistan and overseas listed by the JIT is agreed by the expert witnesses as US$820 million. Whilst accepting that this figure must be discounted to take account of many factors, not least the costs of recovery etc., Claimant’s representatives have put it forward as what might be called the gross amount of possible recoveries by NAB for the purpose of calculating Broadsheet’s potential entitlement to 20 per cent, under the ARA Clause 4". 

The forensic-audited $820.8 million estimate of the Sharif family is probably conservative. It only encompasses what the investigators have been able to uncover. There could be more assets still hidden. 
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