PG Shameem sounds alarm at guarantor appointed release of defendant

Malé, Maldives – Prosecutor General (PG) Hussain Shameem has raised alarms at the lower courts after Managing Director of Sealife Ahmed Moosa (Ammati) was released with the guarantee of his siblings by the Criminal Court of Maldives.

When a [lower court judge] releases a defendant with guarantor appointments against the proper protocol, we have to [appeal at] the High Court… It is a waste of everyone’s time.

PG Hussain Shameem

The Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) has decided to appeal the Sealife MD’s case at the High Court sometime next week stating that the release is against the law.

The appointment of guarantors have become a highly volatile subject in the Maldives after former Tourism Minister and alleged sexual offender Ali Waheed departed the country and failed to return for trial within the allocated time.

In September 2021, the High Court of Maldives reprimanded the state for leniency towards Waheed’s guarantor after the suspect failed to present himself at court. High Court Judge Mohamed Niyaz stated that such leniency makes a mockery of the court procedures.

The High Court made the statement after the state, instead of questioning or taking action against Waheed’s guarantor State Minister for Youth and Sports Assad Ali, chose him to represent Maldives in the SAFF Championship.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of Maldives has amended the court procedure regarding the travel of suspects and banned exiting the country after appointing a guarantor in June 2021. Prior to this, travel abroad was allowed previously under the guidelines authorized by the Criminal Procedure Code (Act No. 12/2016).