Police investigating death of baby in Vilimale’

Police have launched an investigation into an incident that occurred in Vilimale’ where a one month baby was found dead.

“Police were informed of the death of a baby and we are investigating the case,” a police media official told Minivan News, before declining to provide further information.

However, the official did say that police were not investigating the murder of a baby, as reported by some media outlets, but was investigating the death of a baby in Vilimale’.

Speaking to Minivan News today Director of Vilimale’ health centre, Ahmed Zahir, said that the dead body was brought to the health centre at 2:20pm yesterday.

“It was a female and one month old,” he said. “The baby was bleeding from her nose and mouth when it was brought to the health centre.”

He said the baby was then taken to Male’ after examining at the health centre.

“The baby’s mother and father was arrested as far as I am concerned,’’ he said, adding that he did not have further information on the incident.

According to local media, the incident occurred yesterday (24 March 2013) in Vilimale’, the fifth ward of Male’ city.

People who had witnessed the baby being carried to the health centre have told local newspapers that the baby was bleeding from the nose and mouth and that parts of the infant’s body were swollen in blue colour.

The papers reported that the mother of the baby had told the neighbours that the baby died after she accidentally crushed it under her body.

Sun Online quoted a member of mother’s family as saying that they knew about the incident when the baby’s mother told them the baby was dead yesterday afternoon.

The family also told the paper that the baby’s body was very hard when they touched it before it was taken to the health centre.

They also told the paper that the family members overheard the couple arguing the night before.

According to the paper, the baby was the couple’s first child and both the mother and father have previous drug related offences recorded with the police.

The corpse of a premature baby boy was discovered in Vilimale’ in May 2011, concealed inside a Coast Milk tin.

At the time police arrested a 30 year-old woman from Noonu Atoll who was the suspected mother of the baby, and a 24 year-old woman from Kaafu Atoll who was alleged to have assisted her deliver the baby prematurely.


Couple charged with aborting child deny murder charges in court

The Criminal Court has  conducted its first hearing into charges of murder against a couple who allegedly aborted their 20-week old foetus.

The local media present at the court identified the couple as Aiminath Shaahy Aalam, 21 and Ibrahim Visam, 26, both from Addu City.

The mother Aiminath Shaahy Aalam was given the opportunity to respond to the charges and told the court she had previously stated how the incident occurred in the statement she gave to police.

The statement was read out in court, in which she confessed she had not sought medical care when she knew she was pregnant, and that she and her husband had discussed the matter and decided to abort the child. According to the statement, she confessed to taking abortion pills.

However, today in court she denied taking the pills with the intention of aborting the child and said she did not know what the pills she used were. She told the court she got the pills from a doctor working in the Dhilshaadh Clinic on Hithadhoo in Addu City.

In the statement she gave to the police investigators, she stated that her stomach had started aching at night while her husband was sleeping. She said said she woke up her husband and told him about it.

She said her husband then took off his shirt and she dropped the fetus on his shirt.

When the judge queried this, she said that she felt that something dropped on the shirt, but she didn’t see what it was, and neither did her husband showed her. Instead, he wrapped the shirt around it and put it into a plastic bag and took it away.

In  the court today, Aalam denied she was involved in killing the baby and told the judge that she wanted the state appoint a lawyer for her.

The father’s trial was also conducted today. He also denied the charges and requested the court give him time to appoint a lawyer, which the judge granted.

Police discovered the foetus buried on the beach of Maradhoo-Feydhoo in December 2012, after local witnesses reported a motorist acting suspiciously in the area, according to local media reports.

Abortion in the Maldives is illegal unless it is proved the conception is the result of rape, or that the pregnancy is a threat to the mother’s health.

The Prosecutor General’s Office forwarded the couple’s case to the Criminal Court on May 2.

Police have claimed that the buried foetus was found with its heart beating, but later died after being taken to the hospital.


Married couple arrested over possession of illegal narcotics worth MVR 615,600

Police have announced the arrest yesterday (January 8) of a married couple in connection to the discovery of 270 bullet-sized packets of illegal narcotics.

The drugs were said to have been discovered both at the couple’s home and at the workplace of the male suspect, according to local media.

The Maldives Police Service said that during raids on two separate properties as part of the case, MVR 72,025 (US$4670) and US$121 in cash were discovered. Two empty bottles of vodka were also said to have been found inside the couple’s home.

According to police, the female suspect was aged 22 and the man was aged 28.  Meanwhile, local newspapers have reported that the male suspect was employed at a State Trading Organization (STO) flour storehouse.  However, authorities have opted to withhold the names and other information of the suspects at time of press.

The male suspect was arrested at 2:30pm, while his wife was arrested at 5:30pm, according to police.

Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz said via social media service Twitter that that the street value of the drugs seized yesterday was estimated at MVR 615,600 (US$39,922).

Minivan News understands that the couple were brought before judges to extend their pretrial detention period.

On November 28 last year, authorities uncovered more than MVR 1 million (US$ 64,808) in cash along with other foreign currencies during an operation to thwart a local drug network.

Deputy Police Commissioner Hussain Waheed tweeted at the time that the street value of the drugs discovered during the same operation would reach over MVR 10 million (US$648,000).


‘Celebrants’ are the victims here, not the Swiss: Guardian

“Thousands of couples across Europe and the US who have married or renewed vows in Asian ceremonies must now be wondering what was really said as rings were passed and kisses were exchanged,” writes William Sutcliffe in the UK’s Guardian newspaper.

“However pleasant the officiators may have seemed, however sincere the tone of the ceremony appeared, it is clear now that literally anything could have been passed off as a blessing or a chant. Of course, this should always have been clear, but such is the determination to believe in some vague ideal of Eastern mysticism that most people who buy into these ceremonies presumably dismiss any legitimate scepticism as somehow “Western” and inappropriate.

“All hotels are reliant on a theatre of deference and respect. In expensive hotels in poor countries, where cocktails are served by waiters whose daily wage is less than the price of one of the drinks they serve, the gulf between what the staff think of the guests and how they are obliged to behave is likely to be at its largest. Only rarely does the fourth wall in this drama ever come down. This video is a truly spectacular example.”

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