Thursday 11th Aug 2022
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President Yameen

Inconsistencies observed in chain of custody in Pres Yameen case

Documents submitted as part of discovery in the case raised against former President Abdullah Yameen has show inconsistencies in chain of custody, dealing a blow to the prosecution.
President Yameen is on trial for money laundering and bribery charges in connection to the sale of Aarah Island in Vaavu atoll. Currently, the court is hearing witness statements.
On Monday, Criminal Court heard statements from an investigative officer at Maldives Police Service (MPS) who had prepared the document examination report on the authenticity of deposit slips and letters.
In his deposition, the officer reported that all procedures were followed. He added that procedures dictate that he can only accept any evidentiary items if the chain of custody is complete.
However, the chain of custody report states the evidence was obtained on 23rd August 2026. Defense lawyers argued that this was an issue, adding that this raised questions on the authenticity of the entire report.
The witness admitted to the mistake, but stressed the report he had prepared was an accurate one.
The prosecution had attempted to raise more questions about the chain of custody. However, senior Judge Ahmed Shakeel shut down the line of questioning. He said in this phase the state cannot ask new questions from the witnesses.
So far, four witnesses have given their statements. Three MPS officers have given their statements with regards to a forensic report.
In addition to President Yameen, former Member of Parliament Yoosuf Naeem is also under prosecution for the same charges. The next hearing will be held on Thursday.