FIA wants same access to government records as NAB

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) should have the same access to government records as the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Additional Director General Basharat Mehmood Shehzad told the National Assembly on Tuesday. Briefing the National Assembly's Standing Committee on Interior, the FIA official said the agency was unable to achieve the desired results due to the many flaws in the Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Act 2010. Due to these flaws, records are not received on time and investigation is delayed, the director lamented. “FIA should have the same access to government records as NAB has,” Shehzad told the committee, adding that the anti-money laundering law required amendments as currently the agency has to obtain permission from a sessions judge if it requires banking records. The government decided to amend the Anti-Money Laundering Act 2010 last month to bring individuals involved in money laundering to the book. As per the proposed amendments, clauses of the anti-money laundering law will be included in Anti-Terrorism Act, and trial of all crimes will be completed within six to 12 months. Money laundering will be declared a non-bailable offence, and imprisonment sentence will be enhanced up to 10 years and fine be increased to five million rupees.

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