Police officer assaulted in Malé

A group of people dragged a police office into a private residence in Malé and beat him severely last night.

A police media official told Minivan News that the policeman was forced into a house near Petrel café in Machangoalhi ward and beaten at around 11.10pm.

“He was taken to Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital for treatment. He suffered injuries to the head and had minor cuts and bruises,” police said.

The injured officer has since been released. No arrests have been made yet.

Two police officers were assaulted during an anti-government protest on May 1. The two were taken to Sri-Lanka for further treatment.

Some 14 individuals have been arrested over the May Day assault.


Court extends detention of police officer arrested for drugs smuggling

The Criminal Court has extended the detention period of a police officer caught smuggling drugs in to Male’ Custodial Center.

According to local media, the police officer was a lance corporal and was in police uniform when he was arrested.

In March, another police officer was arrested in connection to the largest drug haulfrom a police operation in the country’s history.

The police seized 24 kg of heroin with a street value of MVR36 million (US$2.2 million) and arrested four Maldivians, three Bangladeshis and 11 Pakistanis.


Two suspects linked to police officer stabbing

Police have said an officer working at the Maafannu Ward Police Station in Male’ was hospitalised on Saturday (July 14) after being stabbed in the shoulder with a sharp object at around 3:30am.

Police Spokesperson Sub-Inspector Hassan Haneef today told Minivan News that the injured officer, who was admitted to Indira Gandi Memorial Hospital (IGMH), was released later the same morning.

‘’The investigation is still going on and no arrests have been made,’’ Haneef said.

A statement issued by the Maldives Police Service stated that the officer had been left with a four inch wound in his shoulder following the incident.

According to police, two figures riding a Honda Airblade motorbike are suspected of having involvement in the attack.  No motive has as yet been identified.

Other attacks

Haneef added that another attack on a police officer was recorded in the capital on Thursday (July 12). The officer involved in the incident has since been taken to Sri Lanka for medical treatment.

‘’The police officer was attacked while he was on a Dhilbahaaru Magu [Road] near the Mahchangolhi Cemetery,’’ Haneef said.  “The officer was knocked on the head using a pavement brick and suffered injuries to his skull, face and neck and there were bruises all over him, ” Haneef said.

Haneef said the police officer was on duty patrolling the streets when he was attacked.

‘’Although a second police officer was present at the time of attack, the assailants were too fast and fled before he could do anything,’’ he said. ‘’The CT scan of the injured officer’s head shows that he had received injuries to the skull. Doctors said he was suffering from amnesia.’’

The police website states that the officer was attacked by individuals believed to have been involved in ongoing anti-government protests that have taken place in Male’ this week.


Police officers to be tested for alcohol and drugs

Police Commissioner Abdulla Riyaz has said that a new department has been established to test police officers for urine and alcohol after media reports of police being drunk while on duty.

Riyaz said police officers will be randomly picked for the urine test and that police officers will always be tested to see if officers use any illegal drugs or alcohol.

Riyaz said this was to strengthen police professional standards and to increase public confidence in the police.

He told the press that this new policy was not established because there have been issues with the police, but to ensure all citizens that police officers on duty are there only for the safety of the citizens.

Riyaz said although this was new in the Maldives it had been done in other countries.

Earlier this month Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Spokesperson Imthiyaz Fahmy alleged that many police officers in riot gear to control a MDP protest “were drunk” and some fell to the ground “while others were seen vomiting.”

Imthiyaz further alleged that police officers had forced MDP activists to drink alcohol.

A police official told Minivan News that time the accusations were baseless: ”It would be better to report these allegations to the Police Integrity Commission (PIC) or some other independent institution to investigate, rather than making false accusations,” the police spokesperson said.

Recently police arrested 13 people after clashing with demonstrators at the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)’s ongoing protest.

MDP supporters alleged that police officers were drunk and were very violent that night. Several protesters alleged that police officers stabbed them and that officers were armed with small bayonet knives.


High Court invalidates Criminal Court verdict against police officer

The High Court has invalidated the Criminal Court’s ruling on a Police Drug Enforcement Department (DED) Officer.

The officer was accused of asking an inmate to find him two girls between the ages of 16 to 25 to have sex with him three nights from 8:00pm to 1:00am, and that in exchange the inmate was to be freed and the case dropped.

The High Court identified the inmate as Mabaah Waheed of Maafannu Jaina and the police officer as Police Constable Ahmed Ismail.

The Criminal Court had ruled that according to Mabaah’s statements, documents presented to the court and text messages sent to Mabah’s mobile phone warranted enough evidence to suggest claims made by Mabah against Ismail were true.

The High Court however noted that Mabaah was arrested by the police on a drug related matter in a case Ismail investigated, raising the possibility that Mabaah might have a grudge against Ismail and so his statements would be weak.

The High Court said in the ruling that Ismail had argued that evidences and statements given by Mabaah should be invalid because Mabaah was inclined to give false statements as Ismail had not commuted the investigation.

The texts allegedly sent to Mabaah by Ismail requesting for the girls were not tested by any digital analysis system, the High Court said, adding that there was not enough evidence to suggest the texts were really sent by Ismail.

The Court also said that there was no evidence other than the words of Mabaah that the documents, written in English, were given to him by Ismail asking for the two girls.

Delivering the verdict, the High Court said it was hard to believe that a person would give a document making such a request, and that the only evidence that the Prosecutor General has presented to the court was the document  and the text messages on the mobile phone, not enough to prove that the officer was guilty.