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MP Sinan detained for terrorism trial

The former ruling party lawmaker is among 11 high-profile detainees charged with terrorism and bribery over an alleged plot to topple the government. 



The criminal court on Sunday ordered the detention of MP Abdulla Sinan for the duration of his upcoming terrorism trial.

The former ruling party lawmaker was arrested days after President Abdulla Yameen declared a state of emergency on February 5. The court previously remanded him for 15 days.

He was later charged with terrorism over an alleged plot to topple the government along with other high-profile detainees rounded up under emergency powers.

His lawyer told Raajje TV that Sinan was first accused of accepting bribes from MP Faris Maumoon in May 2017. But the terrorism charge relates to allegedly conspiring with the jailed ex-police chief ahead of the February 1 Supreme Court order for the release of political prisoners.

The judge extended Sinan’s detention based on a secret police intelligence report, the lawyer said.

The MP for the Machchangoalhi South constituency in Malé is also among 12 defectors from the ruling party who have been stripped of their seats.

In a statement Friday, the opposition called the charges against five MPs “part of a deliberate policy by President Yameen to destroy the political opposition, and especially the opposition’s majority in parliament.”