Court finishes appeal process of jailed Adhaalath Party leader

Sheikh Imran Abdulla leaves the High Court after his final appeal hearing. PHOTO/MIHAARU

Sheikh Imran Abdulla leaves the High Court after his final appeal hearing. PHOTO/MIHAARU

The High Court on Tuesday completed the appeal process of religiously conservative Adhaalath Party’s jailed president Sheikh Imran Abdulla.

Sheikh Imran is sentenced to 12 years on terrorism charges for inciting violence during a major opposition protest held in May 2015. He had appealed the case and the hearings were previously considered over, until changes were brought to the Judges Bench with the transfer of Judge Shujau Usman, who presided over the case, to the Southern Branch of the High Court. The shift had mandated another hearing for Sheikh Imran’s appeal prior to the verdict.

The current Judges Bench is headed by Chief Judge Abdulla Didi alongside Judge Abdulla Hameed and Judge Abdul Rauf Ibrahim. Monday’s hearing comprised of case summaries from both the prosecution and defence. The judges declared that should neither party have any more issues to clear, Imran’s verdict will be read in the next hearing.

Sheikh Imran’s lawyer Husnu Al Suood has declared that his defendant’s jail sentence violates constitutional laws and highlighted 12 points to nullify the Criminal Court’s original verdict. He especially stressed that the Criminal Court had sentenced Sheikh Imran without presenting any witnesses.

The prosecution did not give a statement on behalf of the state during Monday’s hearing.

Imran was shifted to house arrest since mid-2016 due to ongoing repairs of the prison.

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