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7 officers suspended, under criminal investigation

Shahudha Mohamed
08 July 2019, MVT 22:27
Commissioner of Police Mohamed Hameed. He announced that investigations were launched into seven officers who were documented beating up a suspect last Thursday night. PHOTO: NISHAN ALI/ MIHAARU
Shahudha Mohamed
08 July 2019, MVT 22:27

Maldives Police Service on Monday night confirmed that seven officers were suspended and under criminal investigations over the brutal misconduct against a suspect arrested late last Thursday.

A statement released by the police addressed that Commissioner of Police (CP) Mohamed Hameed ordered Professional Standards Command to investigate the incident after a video of officers from the Drug Enforcement Department (DED) beating up a suspect in Ujaalaage, Maafannu ward, went viral on social media.

The video depicts plain-clothed officers inflicting multiple blows on the suspect, including kicks and jabs after the individual was thrown down and pinned to the ground.

Throughout the duration of the video, the person did not exhibit any sign of retaliation and was compliant to the officers' bidding.

Moreover, an officer is seen smashing a concrete block on the man's left wrist, presumably in an attempt to destroy his wristwatch.

The statement assured that a special team was assembled to conduct the criminal investigation into the matter.

CP Hameed also requested Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) and National Integrity Commission to conduct independent investigations into the matter.

Police disclosed that a 36-year-old Bangladeshi expatriate was arrested from the residence over drug possession. A local man aged 28 was also apprehended on the road while attempting to flee the premises by jumping out of a window.

Additionally, according to the statement, approximately 461 grams of illegal narcotics were seized from the residence.

Police assured that the two suspects under police custody were taken to the hospital and administered proper medical treatment. The statement further claimed that photos currently circulating on social media were unrelated to Thursday night's incident.

Police also advised the public to refrain from posting pictures of officers on social media with warnings and threats, as investigations into the matter are currently underway.

The statement concluded with an affirmation that the institution is attempting to halt any acts of misconduct carried out by police officers.

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