Imran Khan, Pakistan’s former Prime Minister, has been arrested by police in the eastern city of Lahore after being given a three-year prison sentence by a Pakistani trial court for selling state gifts illegally.
The 70-year-old former cricketer-turned-politician was charged with abusing his position as premier from 2018 to 2022 to purchase and resell goods that were brought back from trips abroad and were valued at more than 140 million Pakistani rupees ($635,000).
He was found guilty of not disclosing the income he received from the sale of state goods by an Islamabad court. He claims he will appeal and disputes the accusations.
After the decision, Mr. Khan was arrested and brought from his Lahore house.
The 70-year-old former cricketer lost his seat in a no-confidence vote last year after a dispute with Pakistan’s powerful military. He was elected in 2018 but was removed from office.
Since his dismissal, Mr. Khan has had more than 100 complaints initiated against him, all of which he claims are politically motivated. The claims that he misdeclared information about gifts from foreign dignitaries and the revenues of their purported sale were the focus of Saturday’s verdict.
Imran Khan was detained in May for failing to show up for court as required. After that, the arrest was deemed illegal, and he was released. The government has been exerting significant pressure on his party ever since.
Numerous senior officials have quit, and thousands of followers who are alleged to have participated in the demonstrations that followed Khan’s arrest have been detained.
A conviction in the case, according to legal experts, might eliminate his hopes of running in the national elections, which must be held by early November.