Court sentences Lance Corporal Adam Haleem’s murderer to death

The Criminal Court has found Ahmed Samah of Kaashidhoo guilty of murdering Police Lance Corporal Adam Haleem and sentenced him to death.

The Criminal Court ruling stated that the court had obtained statements from three of the four heirs of Adam Haleem, all of whom who had informed the court that they approved the passing of the death sentence against Samah if the court were to find him guilty.

According to the ruling, the fourth heir of Adam Haleem was his one year-old child, and stated that according to the Hanifee and Maalikee Sects of Islam, the other heirs could approve the death sentence on behalf of the infant.

On July 23, Adam Haleem was stabbed to death by Mohamed Samah at 12:00 am while Haleem was on his way to report for duty.

On July 31 last year, Samah confessed in the Criminal Court to attacking Lance Corporal Adam Haleem, stating that he was under the influence of alcohol after drinking cologne.

According to local media, Samah told the court he attacked Haleem with the intention of frightening him but not to kill him, and told the court he wished to repent and apologise to Haleem’s family.

On November 12, a second hearing of the case was held during which Samah said that the confession he made during the previous hearing was a result of police torture while in custody.

The presiding judge asked if Samah could prove the allegation to the court, but Samah said he could not.

Last year after completing the investigation into the case police told media the incident occurred while Haleem was on the way to the police station. The officer had spotted Mohamed Samah outside while he was supposed to be under house arrest.

According to police, Haleem followed Samah to his house and asked him to get ready to come with him to the police station.

According to police procedure, a person under house arrest who fails to comply with court order is to be arrested and taken to the court, and transferred to a pre-trial detention centre.

Samah refused to go to the police station and became angry. He entered his house and took an eight inch knife from the kitchen, which he used to stab Haleem in the left side of his chest, according to police.

Before Haleem was attacked, he called the police station had informed officers on duty that Samah was breaching his house arrest, and asked them to attend the scene. However by the time the other police officers arrived Samah had stabbed Haleem and his body was lying on the ground.

Police officers took Haleem to Kaashidhoo Health Centre, but Haleem failed to survive the deep wound in his chest and died at 12:10am that night.

Samah was arrested the next day and was suspected of being under the influence of illegal drugs. The test results showed his body contained THC (cannabis) and AMP (amphetamines), police said.

Recently, Attorney General Azima Shukoor drafted a bill on how the death sentence should be implemented in the Maldives, and proposed using a lethal injection.

The bill is now open for public comments and has not been yet sent to the parliament. Currently there are no laws that state how to execute death sentences – such sentences have traditionally been commuted to 25 year life sentences by presidential decree.

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.


Police fail to bring murder suspect to court

Police on Thursday failed to bring murder suspect Mohamed Samah to the Criminal Court for sentencing.

A court official told local media that the verdict was due to be delivered at Thursday’s hearing, which was cancelled after police did not bring the accused to court despite repeated requests by the judge.

Samah is accused of stabbing police Lance Corporal Adam Haleem to death on the island of Kaashidhoo in Kaafu atoll on July 22.

Following his arrest, Samah confessed to the crime and asked for forgiveness, claiming that the incident occurred while he was under the influence of drugs.

At the last hearing in early November, Samah however told the judge that police extracted the confession through torture.

Samah reportedly told the judge that he would prefer to face the death sentence under Islamic shariah than endure torture in custody.

The judge revealed at the last hearing that three of Haleem’s heirs had opted for qisas (retaliation or death for death).

Following Thursday’s hearing, the Criminal Court – along with the Civil Court and High Court – broke for a 15-day recess. The murder trial will therefore resume after December 15.