Judge lifts conditions imposed on MV opposition leader Gasim

Judge lifts conditions imposed on MV opposition leader Gasim

SAM Staff,

The criminal court has lifted restrictive conditions imposed on Maldives opposition Jumhooree Party leader Gasim Ibrahim when he was released from police custody last week.

The move comes after Gasim’s lawyers accused a police officer of falsely claiming in court that a case against the opposition lawmaker had not been sent to the Prosecutor General’s office.

The police officer was responding to a question from the judge at a remand hearing last Wednesday, after which Gasim was granted a conditional release.

The Prosecutor General’s office later informed Gasim’s lawyers that a case forwarded by the police a day before the remand hearing was sent back due to lack of evidence.

According to a court document handed to Gasim on Wednesday, the police have told the criminal court that the false statement was made due to “an information error” and apologised for the mistake.

The contentious conditions prevented the opposition alliance from using the JP’s headquarters in Malé for gatherings and rallies. Gasim was ordered to refrain both from speaking in a manner that sows discord or incites unrest and allowing others to use his home or property to deliver such speeches.

Other conditions included refraining from “holding meetings with people who sow discord and strife in society,” cooperating with the police investigation, seeking police permission before leaving the country, and not committing any act to influence witnesses or eliminate evidence.

He was also ordered not to make any statements that could cause disquiet or misgivings among the public towards the heads of the executive, legislature and judiciary.

Gasim’s lawyers have stressed that he was unfairly detained for a total of 26 days.

The business tycoon was first arrested in early April but the high court ordered his release after six days.

The appellate court ruled that the arrest was illegal as it violated the parliamentary privileges law, which requires the Prosecutor General to seek a warrant if a sitting MP is to be detained for a criminal investigation.

SOURCEMaldives Independent