The British government has issued an apology to former Maldivian Tourism Minister, Ali Waheed, for his unjustified arrest during his stay in the United Kingdom (UK). Ali Waheed, who had left the Maldives amid sexual harassment allegations, sought medical treatment in the UK in February 2021 and returned to the Maldives in July of the 2023.

While residing in the UK, Ali Waheed was apprehended on allegations of violating the country’s immigration laws. In a statement released by Ali Waheed’s legal team, they disclosed that they had collaborated with a UK law firm to fully safeguard his legal rights permissible by both nations’ laws.

It said British authorities acknowledged the illegality of Ali Waheed’s arrest, following consultations with his legal team prior to court proceedings. As a measure of restitution, the UK government has offered £20,000 in compensation to Ali Waheed.

Alongside this announcement, Ali Waheed posted on X, expressing his conviction that justice will ultimately prevail, regardless of the time it takes.

Ali Waheed had faced charges of sexual assault, sexual abuse, attempted sexual abuse, attempted rape, indecent exposure, and soliciting unlawful sexual contact. However, these charges were dropped after the victims and witnesses recanted their statements, informing both the Prosecutor General’s Office and the police of their desire not to pursue the case any further.