Male, February 19 (Avas): Former Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen has been taken to Maafushi Prison, in accordance with Criminal Court’s orders to keep the former President in custody until the end of his money laundering trial.
Yameen appeared in the Criminal Court here on Monday afternoon after the country’s top prosecutor charged him last week with money laundering.
The prosecution asked the court to take Yameen into custody to deny him the chance to influence the evidence against him.
During the hearing, the Prosecutor General submitted documents supporting claims that Yameen had attempted to influence witnesses through bribery. The state also presented a secret document corroborating allegations that Yameen had attempted to hinder the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Central Bank from filing a Suspicious Transaction Reporting (STR) with the police.
The judge presiding over the trial granted the prosecution’s request to detain the former President
The criminal court has already frozen Yameen’s local bank account holding MVR100 million (nearly USD 6.5 million) which he has appealed.
In addition to Yameen, his top aide and former Legal Affairs Ministe,r Aishath Azima Shakoor, has also been charged as an accessory to money laundering.
The much awaited report into the Maldives Media and PR Corporation (MMPRC) scandal, had revealed that over USD 79 million had been embezzled through the state tourism promotion company.
The funds received by MMPRC were distributed through a private company called SOF Private Limited with strong links to the now jailed former Vice President Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor.
Shortly after the scandal was uncovered, USD 1 million was deposited by SOF in Yameen’s personal account at the Maldives Islamic Bank (MIB).
Yameen continued to insist that the funds in his account were for his failed presidential campaign last year.
President Yameen further said that he had reached an agreement with the country’s graft watchdog on how to transfer the funds, and the funds were deposited accordingly in June last year.