Former MP Nihan given more time to respond to money laundering, bribery charges

Former Vilimale' MP Ahmed Nihan Hussain Manik. (File Photo/Sun/Mohamed Muzain)

Former Vilimale’ MP Ahmed Nihan Hussain Manik has been given more time to respond to the charges pressed against him in connection to the MMPRC corruption case.

Nihan, who had served as PPM’s top parliamentarian back when the party had been in power, has been pressed with six charges; one count of money laundering, three counts of accepting a bribe, and two counts of asking for a bribe.

During the pretrial hearing at the Criminal Court on Thursday morning, Nihan’s lawyer questioned the change in the court section in charge of the case and asked or relevant documents pertaining to the change.

Returning after a short recess to clarify the issue, Judge Ali Adam said the court failed to inform the defense regarding the change due to an administrative error by the registration section, and said that the relevant documents will be handed over this Thursday.

The defense also asked the State to clarify the information on some of the other documents. The State inquired as to the specific documents the defense needs, and said they will be provided by the State.

Nihan was charged with money laundering and bribery after investigators found he asked for and accepted bribes from former Vice President Ahmed Adeeb Abdul Gafoor in exchange for influence over the decisions he made as Vilimale’ MP and chair of Parliaments Public Accounts Committee, and kept and used the illegally obtained funds.

The State said that none of the funds in question were disclosed in his financial statements between 2014 and 2019.

Nihan has a travel ban against him pending the outcome of his trial, and the State has requested the court for the seizure of the funds he obtained through illegitimate means, along with any assets and other funds which may have been mixed with it.