Murder victim’s parents approve death penalty

The Criminal Court has taken statements from the parents of Abdul Muheeth of Veyru in Galolhu Ward who was murdered by a gang on February 10, 2012.

According to local media present in the court today, Muheeth’s father and mother declared they approved death sentences for the suspects if the court was to find them guilty of murdering their son.

The Prosecutor General has charged three men in connection with the murder of Muheeth, identified by police as Mohamed Maimoon of Naifaru in Lhaviyani Atoll, Ali Mushaffau of Maradhoo in Addu City and Muhujathu Ahmed Nasir of Gadhoo in Faadu Dhaalu Atoll.

In December 30, the Juvenile Court finished taking statements from the heirs of Abdul Muheeth, where all approved passing the death sentence against the trial’s defendants should they be found guilty.

In March, Police Inspector Abdulla Satheeh said Muheeth was mistakenly killed by a gang and that he was not the intended target.

Police previously announced that Muheeth was not a member of any gangs, adding that he had also held a responsible job at the time of his death.

Article 88[d] of the Maldives Penal Code states that murders should be dealt with according to Islamic Sharia and that persons found guilty of murder “shall be executed” if no heir of the victim objects, according to Islamic Sharia.

Although the Maldives Penal Code allows for the death sentence, it has traditionally been commuted to 25 years in prison.

However the Attorney General has drafted a bill proposing changes to the law outlining the execution of the death sentence, which would put it into practice.

According to the bill persons found guilty of crimes subject to death penalty will be executed using lethal injection.

The last person to be judicially executed in the Maldives was Hakim Didi, who was executed by firing squad in 1953 after being found guilty of conspiracy to murder using black magic.

Statistics show that from January 2001 to December 2010, a total of 14 people were sentenced to death by Maldivian courts.

However in all cases the acting president has commuted these verdicts to life sentences.