Committee OK’s three-month detention without charge for suspects in major crimes

Parliament's Judiciary Committee convenes for a meeting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

Parliament’s Judiciary Committee has approved an amendment to the Criminal Procedure Code to extend the timeframe people arrested in connection to major criminal offenses can be detained without charge to three months.

The bill proposing the amendment was submitted to the parliament by Ihavandhoo MP Mohamed Shifaau – on behalf of the government.

Judiciary Committee has approved to extend the timeframe police can detain people arrested in connection to major criminal offense in addition to the timeframe allocated for the police to complete their investigation in such cases.

As per the Criminal Procedure Code, persons arrested in connection to major criminal offenses apart from terrorism can only be detained without charge for 75 days. With this amendment, the police will have the discretion to detain them without charge for 90 days.

The Committee also approved an amendment to extend the timeframe to complete investigation in such cases from 45 days to 60 days.

Apart from this, the Committee has also approved amendments to the Judges Act to disallow sitting judges to undertaken additional legal work, and allow a single judge to preside over some case nature of cases submitted to the High Court.

These cases may include decisions made by lower courts on preliminary motions in ongoing cases, and appeal of orders issued by the court with respect to ongoing cases.

The amendments approved by the Committee will then be submitted to the parliament floor. The amend will only come into force once passed by the parliament, and ratified by the president.