President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has pardoned or commuted the sentences of 201 convicts, his spokesman revealed Monday.
Most of the inmates were serving jail terms for theft or drug abuse, Ibrahim Hood told the press.
“There are people who are trapped in the system. The president mostly looked at people who were lost from the system before the new penal code began implementation,” he was quoted as saying by Mihaaru.
All of the convicts have served at least a quarter of their sentences and were assessed to see if they pose a threat to society, he added.
While some inmates would be freed, others would be released to house arrest or have their sentence reduced.
For two years after their release, police will have the authority to conduct raids or searches without a court warrant for convicts who were sentenced on drug-related charges.
Last year, the previous administration was accused of trying to influence September’s presidential election after rules were changed to relax pardons for drug convicts. Several inmates were released to house arrest before the polls.