Same lawyer acting as defence and prosecution in Qary Thaufeeg child molestation case

Police have complained that the defence lawyer of Al-Qary Hussain Thaufeeq, a renowned reciter of the Quran who was recently arrested on multiple charges of child sex abuse,  also served as the prosecution lawyer for one of Thaufeeq’s alleged victims.

Thaufeeq formerly hosted a daily Quran teaching programme on Television Maldives (TVM) for school children every evening after Isha prayers. Prior to his arrest, he also led Friday prayers and conducted sermons.

A police media official said that police would not disclose details regarding the case, but said the lawyer Abdulla Shiyaz had appeared as both Thaufeeq’s defence and as prosecution for one of the girls he allegedly molested.

Legal Officer of the Criminal Court, Mohamed Amir, said the police concerns had been presented to the Criminal Court.

“There were two defence lawyers for Thaufeeq, Abdulla Shiyaz and Ali Shah,” he said. “Police have claimed Abdulla Shiyaz appeared in court as the prosecution lawyer for an alleged victim of the accused. When the investigation is ongoing, the victim has the right to present her own lawyer if she wishes so.’’

Amir said the police investigation team have claimed that the issue could obstruct the police investigation and influence the witnesses.

‘’It is against the code of ethics of lawyers to appear as both prosecution and defence lawyer at the same case,’’ Amir noted.

However Abdulla Shiyaz told local news paper Haveeru that he denied the charges and claimed it was an attempt by police to denigrate his reputation.

He said that when he appeared in court on the victim’s side, he did not know that it was a case related to Thaufeeq.


Renowned Quran reciter arrested for molesting children

Renowned Qary (Quran reciter) Hussein Thaufeeq, widely considered to be one of the best Quran readers in the Maldives, has been arrested on multiple charges of child sex abuse.

Thaufeeq hosts a daily Quran teaching programme on Television Maldives (TVM) for school children every evening after Isha prayers. He also leads Friday prayers and conducts sermons.

Police Sub-Inspector Ahmed Shiyam confirmed Thaufeeq was in police custody after being arrested in connection with “many” child sex offences against girls, “some cases going back a long time.”

‘’The case is under investigation and further information cannot be provided at this stage,’’ said Shiyam.

Police arrested Thaufeeq last week and presented him to the Criminal Court requesting for an extension of his detention. The Court granted an extension of custody to 15 days.

State Islamic Minister Sheikh Mohamed Shaheem Ali Saeed declined to comment on the issue, “as the case is still under investigation.’’

President of the Adhaalath Party Sheikh Hussein Rasheed said that the party was “very concerned” over the issue, “not because a certain person may have done it, but because lately these sorts of crimes are increasing in number day by day,’’ Hussein said.

‘’I would not like to say anything regarding this [specific] case, because it hasn’t been decreed by a court of law and until then it is just an accusation.”