The Criminal Court on Wednesday ordered to remand Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed and Judicial Administrator Hassan Saeed until the end of their trials.
Abdulla Saeed and Hassan Saeed were arrested under the state of emergency the government declared on February 5, after the Supreme Court issued a shocking ruling to release political prisoners and reinstate unseated legislators. The chief justice has been charged with terrorism and obstructing the functioning of the state, while the judicial administrator is charged with bribery and obstructing legal duties.
This marks the first time in recent history for the Maldivian state to indict a chief justice. Following the serious charges raised against Abdulla Saeed, he has been suspended from the judiciary.
Meanwhile, the Prosecutor General's Office has revealed that the investigation into Hassan Saeed unearthed hidden cash amounting to MVR 350,000 and USD 3,300 in his residence. The PG further claimed that they had discovered documents from a bag in Saeed's residence, which indicated that Villa Group, the conglomerate of convicted opposition leader Qasim Ibrahim, had paid USD 2.4 million to Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed and top court judge Ali Hameed to cover properties they had purchased from abroad.
Judge Ali Hameed, along with former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, were also arrested with Abdulla Saeed and Hassan Saeed. Hameed and Maumoon have also been charged with terrorism, and remanded until the end of their trials.
The Criminal Court is yet to reach a decision regarding the remands of others arrested under the SOE, including Maumoon’s lawmaker son Faris Maumoon, his son-in-law Ahmed Nadeem, and former Commissioner of Police Ahmed Areef.