Maldives ex-pres defends Adheeb as a ‘victim’ despite Al Jazeera expose

Former VP Adheeb waves to reporters after he exits the Criminal Court following the verdict. MIHAARU PHOTO

Former VP Adheeb waves to reporters after he exits the Criminal Court following the verdict. MIHAARU PHOTO

Maldives’ jailed former president Mohamed Nasheed has defended former vice president Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor as a “victim” despite an Al Jazeera documentary exposing shocking evidence of mass corruption, thuggery and international money laundering against the ex-VP.

Created by the Emmy and BAFTA winning Al Jazeera’s Investigative Unit, the documentary titled ‘Stealing Paradise’ contains leaked documents and text messages derived from three mobile phones which belonged to the now jailed ex-VP.

It also contains secretly filmed confessions of Adheeb’s former aides who admits to having delivered ‘bags full of cash’ on Adheeb’s orders to top government and state officials.

A screen grab of the Al Jazeera documentary 'Stealing Paradise' shows an alleged text message sent by former vice president Adheeb to a SO police officer.

A screen grab of the Al Jazeera documentary ‘Stealing Paradise’ shows an alleged text message sent by former vice president Adheeb to a SO police officer.

According to the evidence, Adheeb had conspired with police to ‘light up’ a government office, bribe his way up the pecking order and even allegedly plot to have his boss, incumbent president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom killed.

Despite all the evidence, Nasheed during his interview with Al Jazeera described Adheeb who is serving 33 years in prison for two counts of terrorism and corruption as a “victim”.

“President Yameen can pluck and pluck any boy who is in his early 30s and corrupt him,” Nasheed who has now teamed up with Yameen’s two vice presidents including Adheeb said.

“He’s just one of the victims. But of course we need to investigate who did what.”

When asked directly whether Adheeb was a victim or someone who should take responsibility for his criminal actions, the former president was ambivalent: “I’ve never found these things so black and white.”

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