Luthfee, mastermind behind deadly 1988 attack, freed

Abdulla Luthfee is extradited to Maldives on July 9, 2019. (Photo/Sun/Ahmed Awshan Ilyas)

Abdulla Luthfee – the mastermind behind the deadly terror attack of November 3, 1988 – has been freed from prison upon the completion of his sentence.

A spokesperson from Maldives Correctional Service confirmed to Sun that Luthfee’s sentence expired on Monday, and he will walk out of prison later in the day.

Luthfee completed his 25-year sentence for his role in the 1988 attack, back in June.

He was later serving a seven-month sentence delivered in 2021, after he fled overseas upon being granted medical furlough.

Luthfee was serving a life sentence for his role in the 1988 attack when he was issued a one-year travel document to travel to India for medical treatment at his own expense by the Home Ministry, on January 16, 2010.

Abdulla Luthfee escorted by Maldives Correctional Service officers to Indhira Gandhi Memorial Hospital on July 22, 2019.

He went on the run after he was granted furlough, remaining at large for nearly a decade, before surrendering himself to officials at the Maldivian embassy in Colombo on May 1, 2019 amid security sweeps in Sri Lanka following the Easter bombings.

Luthfee was charged with fleeing a detention facility – a Class 5 felony punishable with nine months and 18 days in prison.

However, he pled guilty to the charge, and received a lighter sentence of seven months and six days in prison.

The foiled attack of November 3rd, 1988, with armed mercenaries from Tamil secessionist organization People's Liberation Organization of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), was carried out in an attempt to overthrow former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom’s administration.

Abdulla Luthfee, the mastermind behind the terror plot of November 3, 1988, being escorted for investigation. (File Photo)

The attack killed 19 Maldivian citizens - eight soldiers and 11 civilians - and left scores more injured.

Luthfee was originally issued the death penalty for the crime but his sentence was later commuted to a life sentence of 25 years by Maumoon.

Luthfee’s co-conspirator, Sagar Ahmed Nasir, also received the life sentence.

He was freed upon completion of his sentence some years back.