High Court has dismissed the terrorism charges filed against Mohamed Ameen, Kariyya Villa, Maadhadu, Fuvahmulah City – who the police suspect to be the leader of the Maldivian faction of the terror organization, Islamic State.
The dismissal of the charges filed against him means that he must be released from custody.
High Court had dismissed the charges against Ameen – citing that the charges were filed after the expiration of the statute of limitation.
Ameen had been charged with membership at a terrorist organization and conspiracy to carry out an act of terrorism. He is the first person to be arrested and charged under the revised Anti-Terrorism Act.
Ameen is suspected of involvement in the Sultan’s Park bombing which injured a dozen tourists in 2007. He fled the country after the bombing, prompting an Interpol red notice against him.
He was located in neighboring Sri Lanka and brought to Maldives in 2012 but released by the court after two months of detainment.
He was rearrested in 2019 – under suspicion of spreading radical extremist ideologies and recruiting and dispatching people for jihad in other countries. Ameen was transferred to house arrest in February this year – due to complaints of not receiving adequate medical care the opportunity to exercise outside of his jail cell.
US Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control has Ameen flagged as a senior operative of IS, making him the first Maldivian national to be named on the OFAC’s terror list.
According to the US, Ameen was actively engaged in leading IS recruitment in Maldives. He is also accused of assisting the IS branch in Afghanistan and Pakistan by providing funding, assists and technological support.
‘WILL APPEAL HIGH COURT’S DECISION TO THE SUPREME COURT’
The Prosecutor General’s Office stated that they will be appealing the High Court’s decision to the Supreme Court.
Public Prosecutor Ahmed Shafeeu stressed that they were unhappy with the High Court’s decision – detailing that they believed the Court to have misinterpreted Article 26 (K) of the Anti-Terrorism Act in their decision as well as due to the failure to refer to the exceptions to the statute of limitations stipulated in the Act – for investigation and filing charges in terrorism-related cases.
He also added that the failure to refer to the exceptions to the statute of limitations stipulated in the Anti-Terrorism Act – leads for the stipulated exceptions to serve no purpose.