Court rejects confession under torture

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 26 June 2001, 12:50 GMT]
The Eastern High Court in Trincomalee Friday acquitted the accused in the murder four years ago of former Trincomalee District Parliamentarian M.E.H.Maharoof. The accused had been in remand at Kalutara prisons for the four years. "I acquit the accused as I cannot accept his confession made to the police voluntary and also due to contradictory and inconsistent evidence led by the prosecution," said High Court Judge Mr.A.N.Ramachandran in his order delivered Friday.

The Attorney General indicted Stanislaus Sasikumar of Sambaltivu, north of Trincomalee town with the murder of Mr.Maharoof. The victim was shot dead while he was on his way to Irrakakandy, a Muslim village north of Trincomalee on 20th July 1997.

Mr.Gamini Wijesuriya, Superintendent of Police and Mr.K Baskaran, a constable gave evidence at the trial. State Counsel Mr.B.Sasi Mahendra appeared for the prosecution.

The medical report of the Colombo Judicial Medical Officer Dr.Dassanayake was submitted to court. In that report, the JMO had stated that about twenty healed wounds were found on the body of the accused. He was of the view that the accused had been subjected to torture whilst in detention.

The defense submitted to court that the Police officer who obtained a statement from the accused soon after his arrest, had helped his superior Police officer to record the confession purported to have been made by the accused at a later stage. "This could not be accepted. Furthermore there were contradictions between the evidence of two police officers who gave evidence", Defense Attorney Mr.T.Thiruchenthilnathan in his submission said.


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