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Police search jailed ex-VP's home for 'evidence'

Farah Ahmed
24 September 2017, MVT 12:45
The police outside the Rehendhi apartment building in the capital Male on Friday night. MIHAARU PHOTO / NISHAN ALI
Farah Ahmed
24 September 2017, MVT 12:45

The police on Friday night raided jailed former Vice President Ahmed Adheeb’s residence at Rehendhi Apartments in capital Male.

Mihaaru is aware that the former vice president’s home was searched under a warrant issued by the Criminal Court to find evidence for his bribery conviction.

Allegedly, during his tenure as the Minister of Tourism as well as after assuming the post of vice president, Adheeb had pocketed large sums of money given to him as bribes from various individuals.

The police, on Friday night, were looking for traces of the illicit money as evidence, credible sources revealed.

The former vice president, who has served about two years of a hefty 33 year prison sentence for orchestrating an assassination attempt on incumbent President Abdulla Yameen and for his involvement in the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC)'s corruption scandal, was subjected to multiple searches when he was initially accused of the crimes he is now serving time for. Nothing was reportedly taken as evidence from Adheeb’s house then.

Whilst there were no reports of Police seizing anything from the apartment, the police had thoroughly searched the dwelling, even removing the ceiling to find potential evidence.

According to the search warrant, the apartment legally belongs to Aishath Mamdhooha – a ruling coalition’s council member representing the Maldives Development Alliance (MDA).

Reportedly, she was leasing the Rehendhi apartment to Adheeb; however, after he was arrested, she had leased the apartment to Chinese workers in Male. When the police searched the apartment, the current residences were still there, sources said.

Late in August, Adheeb was faced with the fresh charge of ‘abuse of power for illegitimate private gains’. During the preliminary hearing of the case, Adheeb accused the government of “framing” him and claimed that he was arrested on trumped-up charges. If convicted of the new charge, Adheeb faces an additional 27 years to his sentence.

Adheeb could potentially face even more charges as the police are still investigating numerous allegations against the former vice president. Meanwhile, the Criminal Court on Wednesday announced that the hearings for MMPRC's former chief, Abdulla Ziyath, will commence this week. Ziyath, who is already serving 8 years of imprisonment for embezzlement, has 33 additional charges of corruption levied against him. The opposition has accused the ruling government of using Adheeb and Ziyath as "scapegoats" for their ordeals.

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