January 17, 2012

A senior judge in the criminal court in the Maldives, Judge Abdulla Mohamed, has been arrested.
A government statement said he was held for "corruption" and "allowing his judicial decisions to be determined by political and personal affiliations".
Other reports say the arrest comes after he released an opposition leader who had been detained without warrant for allegedly defaming the government.
Judge Mohamed has made no comment on his arrest as yet.
Opposition activists said that the arrest was in retaliation for the judge ruling that the detention of opposition leader Mohamed Jameel Ahmed's one day earlier was illegal, news agency AP reported.
Mr Ahmed had been arrested for allegedly defaming the government in a television interview.
The government statement accused Mr Mohamed of failing to respect the principle of judicial independence and also refers to him "repeatedly releasing opposition figures brought before the courts for serious crimes".
Local media reports say all court hearings have been suspended in the wake of the arrest.

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