Ihavandhoo ice plant murder: Assailant appeals death sentence

Sumon Miah: He was sentenced to death for the murder of Ismail Umar (Isse) at the ice plant in H. A. Ihavandhoo on June 16, 2017.

The Bangladeshi national who was sentenced to death for the murder of a man who found killed at an ice plant in HA. Ihanvandhoo has appealed the verdict.

Ismail Umar (Isse), 54, Athireege, Lh. Hinnavaru, was found murdered inside the ice plant where he worked as a mechanic on June 16, 2017.

His colleague and roommate, Sumon Miah, a Bangladesh national, was charged with murder with intent using a sharp-edged weapon in connection to the case.

Sumon had confessed to the crime both to investigators and at court, explaining in detail how he killed Isse. He stated that non-payment of overtime allowances was one of the reasons why he had murdered Isse. Sumon explained the second reason to be Isse’s continuous complaints during the hours he spend on the phone talking to his wife.

On the day the court had been scheduled to hear the closing arguments, Sumon retracted his earlier confession and denied he killed Isse.

The court postponed the presentation of closing arguments following the development, but Sumon did not present any evidence or witnesses in his defense.

When asked by the judge for an explanation regarding the decision to retract his earlier confession, Sumon said that he made his earlier confession under duress from the police, who threatened to have him held in the same cell as the other two suspects arrested in connection to the case. However, the other two suspects – who were charged as accessories for concealing the murder – were released after the state failed to prove the charges against them.

Three police officers who investigated the murder appeared at court as witnesses for the state. They were asked if they coerced or abused Sumon in any way. They denied any form of coercion.

Subsequently, state and the defense presented their closing arguments to court. 

The judgement issued by Criminal Court in connection to the case in March read that charge of murder with intent using a sharp-edged weapon against Sumon had been proven beyond reasonable doubt during trial.

The court then inquired the wishes of Isse’s three inheritors – all who demanded the death penalty for Sumon. Therefore, presiding judge in the case, Ali Adam, has sentenced Sumon to death.

Sumon appealed Criminal Court’s sentence to High Court last week.