Judge Hailam suspended, Pres. Yameen’s sentencing hearing canceled

Criminal Court Judge Ahmed Hailam. (File Photo/Sun/Fayaz Moosa)

The Judicial Service Commission has suspended Criminal Court senior Judge Ahmed Hailam and canceled the scheduled hearing of former President Yameen’s money laundering trial.

The Judicial Service Commission summoned Judge Hailam to the Commission today at 8:00, however, the meeting was not attended by Judge Hailam. The Judicial Service Commission noted in its suspension of the Judge that the excuse by Judge Hailam in his failure to appear before the Commission was not an acceptable one.

The JSC began disciplinary proceedings against Judge Hailam regarding a cartoon depicting President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed, chained up with the main instigators behind the November 3, 1988, failed coup attempt.

The Judge had posted the cartoon in a recreational Viber group of the Criminal Court to convey greetings of Victory Day before apologizing for his actions and stating that he was not aware of the President and Speaker’s depictions in the cartoon.

The Commission also noted that the statement containing the apology by Judge Hailam was an answer to the JSC before noting that if Judge Hailam attended work and heard cases it could result in the loss of confidence in the judiciary. JSC decided to suspend Judge Hailam for no more than 60 days.

The decision to suspend Judge Hailam comes amid allegations made by opposition MPs that attempts were being made to influence the trial of former President Yameen by the Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed.