Former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom's legal team, on Thursday, expressed concern over the case submitted by the Prosecutor General's Office (PG) to seize the sum of USD 1 million he was convicted for laundering.
On December 26, the PG Office lodged a case at the Criminal Court calling for the state to take possession of the laundered funds along with any additional financial gains derived from the sum.
The statement released by the lawyers highlighted that the High Court had already accepted the former president's appeal against the Criminal Court's money laundering verdict.
It therefore asserted that state efforts to acquire a verdict ordering the takeover funds based on the criminal court's money laundering conviction before the conclusion of the appeal process hindered Yameen's right to appeal his charges as granted by article 56 of the constitution.
The former president was charged with money laundering over a transaction that involved a deposit of USD 1 million by SOF Pvt Ltd, to Yameen's personal account at Maldives Islamic Bank (MIB).
Although Yameen initially agreed to transfer the USD 1 million to a joint escrow account at Bank of Maldives (BML) with the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), it later surfaced that the money Yameen transferred to the account was not the USD 1 million he received from SOF. The funds from SOF were instead deposited in a general investment account at MIB.
The Criminal Court sentenced the former president to five years of imprisonment and imposed a fine of USD 5 million over the money laundering charges.
The High Court accepted the appeal against the former president's 5-year sentence on December 18.
Yameen is currently serving his sentence in Maafushi Prison.