The conditional release of Haleemath Lamha Abdul Rahman, who faces charges in the murder trial of Mary Grace, a Philippines national who was employed as a nurse at Indhira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH), has been appealed at the High Court.
The Maldivian woman who was also employed as a nurse at IGMH and one of the two people charged in connection with the case, was granted conditional bail by the Criminal Court on November 23.
The Prosecutor General’s Office (PG Office) appealed the case at the High Court on Monday.
During the last hearing held on November 23, the state prosecutors had requested more time to summon some witnesses from the prosecution’s side. 15 days were requested by the state, to produce said witnesses.
As such, the prosecution highlighted that they can present said witnesses with the help of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the High Commission of India in Maldives, and it is taking more time due to the transition of the government and the additional work that comes with the procedure.
With this, the defense’s attorney sought from the judges to release her from custody, if the prosecution was unable to produce witnesses citing these delays which they claim were not justifiable.
Following deliberations over Lamha’s custodial review, the judge granted her conditional bail after weighing the contentions made by both sides over her remand.
Lamha was granted conditional bail for a 180-day period.
Conditions for her bail include being prohibited from going outside between 10pm and 6am, informing the court if she has plans to leave the city as well as showing up at the court when summoned.
Marvin, spouse of the deceased who was also employed as a nurse at IGMH, was also charged in connection with the murder.
Marvin was charged with deliberate murder of his wife Mary Grace on 4 January 2022. He faces accusations of injuring Mary’s head and neck and strangling her to death in their apartment in the capital city, on 19 October 2021.
Marvin faces a 10-year prison sentence if he is proven guilty of the charges raised against him.
Marvin’s alleged lover, Lamha also faces charges for conspiring with Marvin to carry out the murder and assisting in facilitating it. Hearings in both trials are being held separately. Lamha faces six years in prison if she is found guilty.
She also faces additional charges for deliberately taking unauthorized control over the property of another person or place, after the police found two injections from IGMH that she did not have authority to take out of the hospital. The two needles were found hidden inside her bedroom. She is also charged with carrying out an activity that requires permission from authorities, without obtaining permission after police found a drug issued only for the use of hospitals, while searching her bedroom.
If convicted, Lamha will be jailed for four months and 24 days for that offense.
MPS confirmed the arrest of Lamha under a court order, on 16 December 2021.
Mary Grace was employed as a worker at the Dialysis Center of IGMH. The Filipino nurse’s suspicious death was reported on 19 October 2021. After bringing her body to the hospital, her husband initially claimed that she committed suicide by hanging. However, he is to have later changed the story.
The police arrested Marvin, 29, on 27 October 2021 under suspicions of murder as there were no signs of suicide by hanging on the victim’s body.
The murdered nurse’s body was sent to India for an autopsy and returned to her family in Philippines afterwards, on 7 November 2021.
Citing the autopsy report, the police institution revealed that her death is not believed to have been by hanging. The autopsy report indicated that she died from a “blunt trauma”, which refers to an injury of the body by forceful impacts, falls or a physical attack on the body.
The police institution forwarded the case for prosecution on 19 December 2021.