Islamabad: Pakistan People’s Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari was arrested by a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) team from his Islamabad residence hours after the Islamabad High Court (IHC) rejected the PPP leader’s bail plea. A two-member bench of the high court, comprising Justice Amir Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kiyani, allowed the anti-graft watchdog to arrest the Zardari siblings.

Asif Ali Zardari surrendered himself to a team of the NAB after Islamabad High Court (IHC) rejected Asif Ali Zardari and Faryal Talpur’s pre-arrest bail plea in the money laundering case.

Following the refusal of his pre-arrest bail, a team of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) accompanied by police personnel had reached the residence of PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari in order to arrest him. Bureau, accompanied by police personnel, arrested PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari from his residence in Islamabad.

A number of party workers and Zardari’s children Bilawal and Aseefa saw him off as the former president was driven away in a black Landcruiser. The arrest comes hours after the Islamabad High Court rejected an application seeking extension in the pre-arrest bails of Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur in the fake accounts case. Police personnel, including female officials, had entered the former president’s house after the court decision. All roads leading to the residence were blocked by police.

Earlier, a two-member bench that had earlier reserved its verdict on their application announced the verbal order. Both Zardari and Talpur had left the court building before the verdict was announced. The accountability watchdog had constituted two teams for the arrest of the former president. One team was dispatched to Parliament House and another to Zardari House in Islamabad, officials said.

The case pertains to suspicious transactions worth Rs4.4 billion allegedly carried out through a fictitious bank account. According to the prosecution, the account titled M/s A One International was fake and it received a sum of Rs4.4bn out of which Rs30m was paid to the Zardari Group at two different times.

Earlier, when Zardari arrived at the court for the hearing, he was accompanied by his daughter Aseefa. Security measures around the court were tightened prior to the former president’s arrival.