Rilwan murder: Three remanded in custody pending trial

The Criminal Court has ordered the three men arrested on Sunday in connection with the kidnapping and murder of Minican News journalist Ahmed Rilwan Abdulla to remain in custody pending trial.

Almost eight years after Rilwan's abduction, the police on Sunday arrested three individuals in connection to the case. They are Ismail 'Isu' Abdul Raheem Adam (30) from M. Lagoon View, Ahmed 'Ahandhu' Ismail (39) from Ma. Faagafilaage, and Ahmed Muaz (40) of Dhaftharu.

Police said the three men are accused of planning and committing acts of terrorism in connection with the murders of Rilwan and blogger Yameen Rasheed. They were arrested for the investigation being conducted on the two deaths by the Presidential Commission on Deatns and Disappearances.

The commission and police have confirmed that the court had ordered the three men to remain in custody pending trial.

Rumors of the suspects' pending arrest have been circulating since Saturday. Although Isu appeared at the police headquarters early Saturday night on his own accord, the police did not arrest him at the time. He was arrested on Saturday morning while he was having tea at a cafe' in the Henveiru Carnival.

The Presidential Commission on Deaths and Disappearances had earlier said that Rilwan was killed and drowned by local members belonging to the terrorist group Al-Qaeda. Isu allegedly stalked Rilwan a few days before his disappearance. They did so after declaring Rilwan an apostate, the commission said.

Ahandhu has a criminal record of facilitating travel to join the Syrian war. He also has assault and drug-related records.

Arrested suspect Isu attempted to cross over to Syria via the Turkish border in 2015. However, he was arrested near the border. He had previously been arrested on terrorism charges.