Ex-VP Adeeb transferred to house arrest

Former Maldivian Vice President Ahmed Adeeb Abdul Gafoor at an appeal hearing at the High Court on September 15, 2020.

Former Maldivian Vice President Ahmed Adeeb Abdul Gafoor has been transferred out of jail to house arrest.

Adeeb was being detained at the Male’ Prison, following an order issued by the High Court on July 23, to have him detained in a remand jail pending the outcome of appeal proceedings over the Criminal Court’s decision to dismiss the charges pressed against him in connection to the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) embezzlement and money laundering case.

Maldives Correctional Service’s spokesperson told Sun on Saturday that Adeeb has been transferred to house arrest with the court’s permission, in light of his health condition.

He declined to disclose any further details.

Adeeb was pressed with seven charges following an investigation into the MMPRC case by the Asset Recovery Commission, Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) and Maldives Police Service. He was pressed with two counts of accomplice to embezzlement, two counts of misuse of official capacity to obtain an undue advantage, two counts of money laundering, and one count of abuse of power.

The High Court completed appeal proceedings and ordered Criminal Court to reopen the case on September 21, and Adeeb pled guilty to all seven charges under a plea deal with the state during his new arraignment hearing at the Criminal Court on September 30.

He faces 20 years in prison for the charges under the plea deal.

However, Adeeb asked for leniency in sentencing in light of his show of remorse and his cooperation, and asked additional time to renegotiate a lesser sentence with the state.

At the Criminal Court hearing, Adeeb said that he has already spent four to five years in prison on various convictions in connections to the case, and has developed major health complications during that time. He said that he has also repented to God during his time prison, and apologized to the Maldivian people for his part in the crime - while at the same time, also insisting that he had only been acting under the orders of former Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom.

He said that the corruption had been an organized scheme run by the previous government, and that the embezzled funds were used to influence independent institutions, the judiciary, and the parliament.

He said that there isn’t a single political party in Maldives that hadn’t benefited from embezzled funds.

The sentencing hearing is scheduled for Monday, October 5.