Hearings end in Maldives ex-chief prosecutor trial over pres warrant

Ex-PG Muhthaz Muhsin. FILE PHOTO

Ex-PG Muhthaz Muhsin. FILE PHOTO

Criminal Court on Saturday ended the hearings on the trial of the former chief prosecutor and a magistrate over allegedly forging a warrant to arrest the president.

The arrest warrant was issued from the Alif Dhaal Maamigili magistrate court in February. Former prosecutor general Muhuthaz Muhsin has been charged with terrorism while the chief magistrate of the court Ahmed Nihan also faces abuse of power charges.

Despite hearing the closing arguments from both the prosecution and the defence, chief criminal judge Abdul Baree Yoosuf presiding over the case had not announced a date for the sentencing.

The prosecution reaffirmed that the witness testimonies heard during the trial prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Muhthaz had travelled to Maamigili from the capital Male to forge the warrant.

Nihan had allowed access to the court during unofficial hours and had conspired with the ex PG to forge the warrant.

However, the defence argued that though the witnesses had testified that Muthaz and traveled to Maamigili, the prosecution had not produced a single witness to prove that the accused had in fact forged the warrant in question.

Muhthaz meanwhile urged the court to ascertain whether the prosecution witnesses heard in secret by the court had criminal records.

The former PG was removed from his post in November by the government controlled parliament following reports that he was stalling bribery charges against former Vice President Ahmed Adeeb Abdul Ghafoor.

Muhsin – a former criminal court judge – had overseen the controversial prosecutions of Nasheed and former Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim last year. The pair’s imprisonment after rushed trials that drew widespread international condemnation triggered a prolonged political crisis in the Maldives.

 

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