Police have arrested and identified a man they allege is “the top drug dealer in Laamu Atoll”, during a press conference called by Head of the Police Drug Enforcement Department (DED), Superintendent Ahmed Jinah.
Jinah identified the man as Hassan Yousuf, 26 of Mathimaradhoo in Laamu Atoll.
“Police and society have recognised him as the top dealer in Laamu Atoll, and he has now been caught for the second time,’’ said Jinah. “A recent case involving him is in trial, and he was again caught with suspected narcotics.”
Jinah said Yousuf was in police custody and the court had granted an extension of his detention to 10 days.
“The atolls are lately being used by the drug traffickers for transportation and establishing hideouts,’’ Jinah said. ‘’We have conducted special operations in the islands to curb the number of users and dealers, which is hard and challenging due to the low numbers of police officers in the atolls and large areas [to cover].’’
Jinah said police had observed that Addu Atoll, Laamu Atoll and Noonu Atoll were being used by dealers and users for transportation of drugs and the construction of hideouts.
“We do not consider it a failure of police when the courts declare that charged persons cannot be convicted due to lack of evidence,’’ he remarked. “Sometimes when we appeal to the higher courts they invalidate the lower court’s verdict after considering the evidence presented as adequate.’’
Jinah said that police only accept an investigation as failed “when the highest authority in justice declares that the charged person cannot be convicted due to lack of evidence.”
“Police do not have the authority to criticise a court’s decision,’’ he added.
He also noted that although this was the holy month of Ramadan, drug-related crime had not decreased.