Supreme Court halts all virtual trials for defendants residing abroad

Ali Waheed (C) with guarantor Ashad Ali (R) | Photo: Avas

Malé, Maldives – The Supreme Court of Maldives, today, ordered the Criminal Court of Maldives to cease all virtual trials for defendants residing abroad.

The order by the Supreme Court reads that the Criminal Court must stop all hearings via audio and video conferencing for criminal proceedings where the defendant is out of the Maldivian territory until further notice from the Supreme Court. This includes the Criminal Court proceedings against the former Tourism Minister Ali Waheed, charged with 7 counts of sexual offences.

Supreme Court released this order after the prosecution appealed the Criminal Court decision to allow a virtual trial for Ali Waheed who was staying abroad citing medical reasons.

Ali Waheed has since defied Supreme Court summons and is currently residing in the UK.