Police have started implementing monitoring and control orders against five suspected criminals.
The police last week asked the High Court for monitoring and control orders for nine people seen as a “danger to society or suspected to attempt an act that is not in line with expected social behaviour”.
It is not clear if the five are part of the nine ‘MoniCon’ orders sought as police refused to give further details.
“We have begun implementing MoniCon orders against five people. We are implementing as quickly as possible, as orders are being granted,” police spokesman Ahmed Shifan told the Maldives Independent.
Police first send cases to a committee at the Home Ministry to approve the individuals to be monitored and controlled. Police then ask the High Court for an order.
The court decides the action for implementation. The law says that the court could order that the individual has to live at a certain place, remain on the island, has to obtain a letter from the minister to travel abroad and other measures.
The court granted the first MoniCon orders in March 2016, under former home minister Umar Naseer’s administration.
The orders, issued under the controversial 2015 Anti-Terrorism Act, are resuming after an 18-month hiatus in response to the surge in violent crime. MoniCon orders allow police to electronically tag, conduct surveillance, and intercept communication of people suspected of committing criminal activities.
The most common way of implementing the order has so far been electronic tagging.
Those tagged will be required to stay at home between 10:00 pm and 6:00 am and cannot leave the capital without the home minister’s permission.
The police are also authorised to control their financial transactions.
However, Shifan declined to reveal how it is being implemented and declined to confirm if anyone has been tagged.
“I can only say we are implementing the orders. I am not saying no one has been tagged but we do not have to necessarily use electronic tagging to do so. We can also impose curfews or ask the suspect to report to the police at a certain time, under the MoniCon orders” he said.