Axact fake degree scandal: Shoaib Sheikh sentenced to 7 years in prison

ISLAMABAD: A district and Session Court in Islamabad has sentenced Axact Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Shoaib Sheikh and 23 others to 7 years in jail in fake degree scandal, NewsOne reported.

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District and Sessions Judge Chaudhry Mumtaz Hussain announced the judgment on Thursday.

The court has freed Shoaib sheikh’s wife Ayesha sheikh and three others.

Axact CEO Sheikh and 23 others were sentenced to 3 years each under sections 419 and 420 of Pakistan Penal Code, and fined Rs0.3 million each. The accused were also sentenced to 7 years each under sections 468 and 471, and fined Rs1 million each.

On Feb 26, The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) arrested CEO Axact Shoaib Ahmed Sheikh in money laundering case after his protection bail was rejected by Sindh High Court (SHC).

However, on June 20, Additional district and sessions court indicted Axact chief executive Shoaib Shaikh and others in a multi-million money laundering case.

It is pertinent to mention here that Axact scandal surfaced in May 2015, when The New York Times published a report claiming the company sold fake diplomas and degrees online through hundreds of fictitious schools, making “tens of millions of dollars annually”.

In January 2018, Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar took suo motu notice of the Axact fake degree scandal after international news reports once again revealed that over 3,000 UK citizens had purchased fake degrees from Axact in 2013 and 2014.

Investigators have also unearthed 19 Axact-linked off-shore companies based in USA, Britain, UAE, Ireland, Greece, and Singapore.

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