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Bomb maker in Maldives boat blast under witness protection

Mohamed Visham
14 June 2016, MVT 14:58
Security officers tend to the wounded after an IED detonated aboard the presidential speedboat in September last year. PHOTO/PRESIDENT'S OFFICE
Mohamed Visham
14 June 2016, MVT 14:58

The soldier who made the bomb which was used in the plot to kill the president has been released and placed under witness protection, Mihaaru has found.

Former president Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor was sentenced to 15 years after he was found guilty of orchestrating the blast aboard the presidential speedboat in September last year.

President Yameen escaped unhurt but his spouse Fathimath Ibrahim and a presidential aide was injured in the blast.

Two of his former bodyguards also charged in the case received 10 year prison sentences.

The soldier had testified against Adheeb during the trial as a secret witness.

Former VP Adheeb waves as he is led out of the Criminal Court after he was sentenced to 10 years in prison on terror charges. MIHAARU PHOTO/ MOHAMED SHARUHAAN

However, Mihaaru has found that Mohamed Jawaz who was working in the military explosive ordinance disposal department had made the bomb on Adheeb's request.

It is unclear whether Jawaz had been ousted from the military.

It is believed that Jawaz was first held inside the military headquarters along with four other soldiers. After he was released by the military sources say he was taken into custody by the police.

A reliable source told Mihaaru that Jawaz had cooperated with the police during the investigation. In addition to Adheeb and two of his bodyguards, police had originally sought charges against Jawaz.

However, prosecutors had later offered him a deal which would see the charges dropped and get him witness protection if he agreed to be prosecution witness. Sources say Jawaz accepted the deal and was released from police custody in March.

It is believed that Jawaz is still under police protection.

Though offering plea deals and witness protection is not unprecedented in the Maldives, police areyet to comment on the matter.

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