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Two Maldivians wrongfully released in 2Kg drug case: High Court

29 May 2023, MVT 18:01
[File] Drugs seized by the police: The High Court has ruled that the decision by the Criminal Court to release 2 Maldivians arrested in connection with the smuggling of 2 kilograms of drugs was wrongful.
29 May 2023, MVT 18:01

The High Court has ruled that the Criminal Court wrongfully released the two Maldivians detained in connection with the case of a foreigner carrying over 2 kilograms of drugs into the Maldives.

The two Maldivians, who were arrested in December last year were linked to the smuggling of over 2 kilograms of cocaine into the Maldives from Dubai by a Swiss citizen. However, the Criminal Court released them last month, stating that their release did not pose any threats to public safety.

The State had appealed the decision of the Criminal Court, and the High Court made a ruling on the appeal last Thursday. The High Court's ruling stated that while the order issued by the Criminal Court order said that there was no threat to public safety, it lacked evidence on how this was determined. The High Court further said that the Criminal Court did not specify whether there were any changes in the circumstances surrounding the detention.

According to the verdict of the High Court, the decision made by the Criminal Court to release the two Maldivians with conditions, without providing proper reasoning, was wrongful. The High Court's verdict highlighted that the ruling of the Criminal Court contradicted the decisions of higher courts, and therefore the respective judges should be held accountable.

In a unanimous decision, all three judges in the panel of the High Court overturned the ruling of the Criminal Court regarding the release of the two Maldivians. Additionally, they stipulated that a decision must be made if the State requests the lower court to re-arrest the individuals within 7 days.

Judge Hussain Mazeed presided over the bench, which included Judge Huzaifa Mohamed and Judge Hassan Shafeeu.

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