President Yameen will be released around March

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom and member of his legal team, former Vice President Mohamed Jameel Ahmed | Photo: Edition

Malé, Maldives – Former President Abdullah Yameen will be acquitted in March of taking bribes and laundering the money on the lease of V. Aarah, his lawyer Dr Mohammed Jameel Ahmed has predicted.

Yameen was sentenced to 11 years in prison on December 25, 2022 after being convicted of taking bribes and laundering the money on the lease of V. Aarah. He is serving his sentence in Maafushi jail.

The opposition PPM and PNC have handed over their presidential ticket to President Yameen. However, President Yameen will not be able to contest the upcoming presidential election until the jail sentence handed down by the Criminal Court is quashed by a higher court.

Yameen’s lawyers told a news conference today that they will appeal the case in High Court against the verdict and that Yameen will be released in March.

Noting the difference between the appeal stage and the lower court stage, Jameel said the appeal stage would go faster. Even in the High Court, the appeal stages usually have two or three hearings.

Explaining their justifications, lawyer Adam Shameem said the case is expected to be resolved by March if the case continues without any further influence.

The deadline for presidential elections nominations is July 23 to August 3. Therefore, if he contests the presidential election, Yameen must be released before August 3.

Yameen’s lawyers said the appeal against the sentence should be studied carefully. In that regard, party members and leadership are also asking questions and are looking to appeal as soon as possible, the lawyers said.

Yameen’s lawyers have previously said that the appeal is being delayed due to the Criminal Court not issuing the trial report. The court issued the report on the 15th of this month.