Malé, Maldives – At today’s preliminary hearing at the Criminal Court of Maldives, Sealife Ahmed Moosa (Ammati) has been given the opportunity to choose lawyers to represent him.
Presiding Judge Hassan Saeed gave Ahmed Moosa 5 days to find lawyers for the defence team following request by the defendant. At today’s hearing, Ahmed Moosa acknowledged the reception of documents regarding the case.
Ahmed Moosa is charged with 42 counts of criminal offences, with up to 65 years of imprisonment if convicted.
The prosecutors are charging Ahmed Moosa under articles of the Maldives Penal Code (Law No. 6/2014),
- Section 214, Theft of Services – 12 counts (under Subsection B) and 25 other charges.
- Section 215, Theft by Failure to Deliver Funds Entrusted (under Subsection A and B) in addition to;
- Section 210, Theft, misrepresentation, Deception, Extortion and Disposition (under Subsection B) – 5 counts.
Ahmed Moosa (Ammati) who was extradited to Maldives from Sri Lanka via Interpol Red notice was remanded by Criminal Court for 10 days on 24 March 2021 after police took him for a decision on his arrest.
The SeaLife housing fraud case, which was the subject of the biggest class-action lawsuit in Maldivian history at the time, announced a 3,000 apartment housing complex in 2015 after being contracted by the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) in 2014, and had gotten 280 tenants to pay a booking fee of MVR 50,000 and more per tenant. However, the complex was never built and none of the tenants were reimbursed at the time, of the more than MVR 14 million, taken as down payment.
203 tenants of the SeaLife housing complex sued SeaLife Global, HDC and the Ministry of Economic Development.
After the lawsuit was filed, the Housing Development Corporation and the incumbent government came to an agreement with the victims for a settlement of MVR 45 million and allocation of flats under a government housing scheme.