Ex-Maldives leader gets 11 years for money laundering, bribe

Dec 24, 2022, 4:20 PM | Updated: Dec 25, 2022, 6:21 am
FILE- Maldivian President Yameen Abdul Gayoom, center, surrounded by his body guards arrives to add...

FILE- Maldivian President Yameen Abdul Gayoom, center, surrounded by his body guards arrives to address his supporters in Male, Maldives,Feb. 3, 2018. Maldives court sentenced former Maldives president Abdul Yameen for 11 years in prison after the court found him guilty of accepting bribe and money laundering. (AP Photo/Mohamed Sharuhaan, File)

(AP Photo/Mohamed Sharuhaan, File)

MALE, Maldives (AP) — A court in Maldives on Sunday found the former president guilty of money laundering and accepting a bribe and sentenced him to 11 years in prison.

The Criminal Court of Maldives also ordered Abdulla Yameen to pay a fine of $5 million.

The court found Yameen guilty of accepting money for leasing an island owned by the government. He ruled the Indian ocean archipelago nation, known as an exclusive tourist destination, from 2013 to 2018.

It gave him a seven-year sentence for money laundering and four years for accepting a bribe.

This was not the first time Yameen was found guilty. In a separate case in 2019, Yameen was found guilty of money laundering and sentenced to five years in prison.

But two years later, the Supreme Court overturned the verdict, saying that evidence at the initial trial contained discrepancies and did not conclusively prove that Yameen had laundered $1 million in state money for personal gain.

Yamen lost a reelection bid in 2018 to current President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

During his time of office, he was accused of corruption, muzzling the media and persecuting political opponents.

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Ex-Maldives leader gets 11 years for money laundering, bribe