The Criminal Court has extended the detention period of Former Immigration Controller Abdulla Shahid, brother of Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Shahid, and three others who were arrested in connection with an alleged fraud case concerning the Disaster Management Centre, worth MVR 24 million (US$1.57 million).
The five were taken to the Criminal Court last Friday, which extended their pretrial detention period to 15 days.
Meanwhile, Speaker of Parliament Abdulla Shahid tweeted that the police officers who went to arrest his brother violated the sanctity of his house and entered his parent’s bedroom.
‘’I strongly condemn the violation of the sanctity of my residence and my parent’s bedroom by Maldives Police SO (Special Operations) today,’’ Shahid tweeted on Thursday.
Following the speaker’s allegations, police held a press conference on Friday evening during which Police Superintendent Abdulla Nawaz denied allegations that police had violated the sanctity of Abdulla Shahid’s residence.
Nawaz told the press that the police officers went to Shahid’s house and first called his brother Mohamed Shahid. He came downstairs and told the police officers that he needed to see his parents before leaving.
According to Nawaz, police officers went inside with Shahid when he went to see his parents. He expressed concern that the media was misleading the public over the incident.
The case involving the Disaster Management Centre fraud concerns an audit report into the Centre produced by the Auditor General. In the report, the Auditor General alleged that the MVR 24 million was fraudulently obtained from the budget allocated for the Centre for the years 2009 and 2010.
The Auditor General’s special report into the case alleged that the Disaster Management Centre had photocopied, edited and reused ‘Credit Purchase Order Forms’ used in 2005, to withdraw the MVR 24 million from the Centre’s budget at the Finance Ministry.
The ‘Credit Purchase Order Forms’ were originally given to the Disaster Management Centre in 2005 to withdraw cash from the Tsunami Recovery Fund. The Auditor General’s report also suggested that the Finance Ministry was complicit in the alleged fraud.