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President Nasheed (Anni) says “Prison reprieve will be done accordingly with the law”

A total of 119 prisoners were placed in family custody at the beginning of this month, but the move has been criticized by opposition figures. Following this criticism over the decision, President Nasheed (Anni) has said that amnesty for prisoners who have been serving unfair sentences will be done legally.

“I had pledged there would be a release for the prisoners,” he said, “but it will be done accordingly with the law”.

However a member of the newly appointed parole board who did not want to be identified said they were not consulted about the decision, and that it did not follow the normal procedures.

On 7 December, 119 prisoners were put on house arrest to await parole interviews after pledges by the new administration to provide amnesty or lessen their prison term. Most of the cases are drug-related. A senior police officer, who did not want his name published, said that crime rate has increased after the 119 prisoners were put on house arrest. “This has made our job more difficult and it is very hard to detain such criminals” he said.

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