The High Court has rejected an appeal challenging the criminal court’s decision to hold Adhaalath Party president Sheikh Imran Abdulla in police custody until the conclusion of his trial on terrorism charges.
The High Court reportedly informed Imran’s lawyers last week that the appellate court could not review decisions of judges to hold defendants in custody for the duration of a trial.
Imran’s lawyer Husnu Suood told local media today that the High Court’s decision not to accept the case will be appealed at the Supreme Court.
The religious conservative party’s leader is accused of inciting violence at a mass anti-government protest on May 1.
The criminal court ordered police to hold the opposition politician in custody pending the outcome of the trial. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The trial has been stalled after two of the three judges were promoted to the High Court on June 8.
The Adhaalath Party has meanwhile said that Imran’s health is worsening under police custody. Imran is being held at the police detention centre on Dhoonidhoo island.
The Adhaalath Party said in a statement today that Imran has diabetes and high blood pressure. Tests conducted after his arrest show high blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well as high urine acidity, the party said.
He is also suffering back pains as a result of having to sleep on a hard surface, the statement added.
Imran’s continuing incarceration is a “planned and shameful atrocity carried out to psychologically and physically weaken him,” the Adhaalath Party said.
The party also said Imran’s wife has written to the home minister and the Human Rights Commission of Maldives to express concern over his health.
He has been brought to Malé several times to consult specialist doctors.
Imran was first arrested on the night of May 1 and held in remand detention for 26 days. Hours before the criminal court ordered his release on May 27, the High Court overturned the criminal court’s May 17 ruling to keep Imran in police custody for 10 days.
The appellate court ordered his transfer to house arrest, noting that Imran has diabetes and that tests conducted following his arrest showed high levels of blood pressure, cholesterol, and urine acidity.
A doctor had also recommended that Imran should not sleep on hard surfaces due to a spinal injury.
Imran was arrested again on the night of June 1, a day before the terrorism trial began.