Former President Yameen Abdul Gayyoom's legal team have said that they object to the trial to be conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The head of the former President's legal team, the former Vice President Dr Mohamed Jameel said that conducting the trial via video-conferencing, which has been taken as a necessary safety measure during the COVID-19 pandemic, obstructed the defendant's ability to privately confer with his legal team during the course of the hearing.
Dr Jameel accused the State of trying to expedite the legal proceedings against the former President. The charges that are laid against him, one after the other, come at such a frequency that prevent him from preparing himself well, said Dr Jameel.
Dr Jameel said that they had still not received certain documents they had requested from the Court. He said that the Court keeps refusing to hand over the documents.
These documents are needed for the former President’s legal defence, said Dr Jameel. If all the paperwork is in order, the former President will walk free once the case is appealed in the Supreme Court, said Dr Jameel.
The former President is currently serving a five year prison sentence as he has been found guilty by the Criminal Court on the charge of money laundering. The High Court upheld the ruling with a majority vote, as one of the judges in the judges’ panel opined in favour of the defendant’s appeal.