PG indicts 13 opposition lawmakers

Opposition lawmakers pictured en route to Parliament on July 24, 2017. FILE PHOTO/MIHAARU

Opposition lawmakers pictured en route to Parliament on July 24, 2017. FILE PHOTO/MIHAARU

The Prosecutor General’s Office forwarded charges against 13 opposition lawmakers to the Criminal Court on Sunday.

The PG Office is charging nine lawmakers who were summoned to Police over forcefully entering the parliament premises on July 24 despite security forces barring entry, three lawmakers over entering the parliament building that day despite being disqualified from the parliament by the Elections Commission, and one lawmaker who is arrested for allegedly bribing lawmakers.

The nine lawmakers who broke past police barricades and forcibly entered the parliament building are being charged with obstruction of law enforcement officers. If convicted, the nine MPs would be sentenced to four months and 24 days in jail.

The three unseated lawmakers Thulusdhoo MP Mohamed Waheed Ibrahim, Villingili MP Saud Hussain and Maduvvari MP Mohamed Ameeth are being charged with trespassing under Subject 230 of the Penal Code. The three MPs would also face a jail sentence of four months and 24 days if convicted.

Meanwhile, Dhiggaru MP Faris Maumoon is facing bribery charges for allegedly buying off lawmakers to vote in favour of the opposition lobbied impeachment motion of the parliament speaker. MP Faris would face three years, two months and 12 day in jail if found guilty.

Out of the 13 indicted lawmakers, MPs Ameeth, Saud and Faris are currently under remand.

MP Faris also faces the danger of losing his seat in Parliament if found guilty as lawmakers sentenced to jail for a period of time longer than one year are unseated. While MPs sentenced for shorter periods preserve their seats, they are not allowed to attend sittings for the duration of their sentences.

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