HC rejects confession, acquits PTA accused

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 06 March 2002, 22:14 GMT]
"The court has come to a conclusion that the confession purported to have been made by the accused was obtained by the Police on the promise that he could be released once he signed the confession recorded in the Sinhala language. Hence the Court holds that the confession of the accused was not a voluntary one and rejects it," said the Eastern High Court Judge Mr.J.Visvanathan Wednesday when acquitting the accused in a case indicted under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA).

In this case the Attorney General indicted Subramaniam Kirushnamoorthy, sub postmaster of Sampaltheivu in Trincomalee district under the PTA for failing to inform the Police about the movements of some LTTE cadres in his area.

When the defence brought to the notice of the court that the accused had not made any confession to the Police as stated by the prosecution, the Court ordered a voire dire inquiry.

The accused said in evidence that under detention the Police brought some papers typed in Sinhala and wanted him to sign. The accused further said that the Police Officer who conducted investigations had assured him that he would be released once he signed the typed documents. Hence he signed the documents expecting the release. He did not know the contents of the document when he signed.

The accused added that he was the sub postmaster of the Sampaltheivu sub post office for about ten years. Large number of people comes to the sub post office daily to do transaction. He was unable to say whether LTTE members were also coming with them.

The prosecution told court that another police officer who translated the confession purported to have been made by the accused from Tamil into Sinhala had died.

The High Court Judge Mr.J.Visvanathan Wednesday delivered his order acquitting the accused. The Judge stated in his order, "as the police officer who translated the confession purported to have been made by the accused in Tamil into Sinhala had died. As such the Court was not in a position to take a decision regarding the competency of the said police officer in both languages, Sinhalese and Tamil. In addition the accused had stated in his evidence that he signed the document typed in Sinhala on a promise by the ASP that he would be released once he signed the said document. Furthermore the accused had said that he did not know what was typed in the said document."

Citing a judgment in the New Law Report of 1989 given by Justice Malcolm Perera in a case Vivekanandan Vs Selvaretnam, it was clearly stated that a confession given by an accused on the promise that he would be released once he signed should be considered an involuntary one and be rejected forthwith, Judge Mr.Visvanathan said that "taking into consideration the above facts the Court holds that the accused in this case had signed the confession purported to have been made by him on the promise that he would be released. Hence the Court rejects the confession was not a voluntary one and acquit the accused."

State Counsel Mr.B.Sasi Mahendra appeared for the prosecution. Attorney-at-Law Mr.M.K.Sellarajah appeared for the defence.

 

Latest 15 Reports
19.10.19 23:31  
Pentagon steps up maritime defence trade with India, UK seeks IOR opportunities
18.10.19 23:43   Photo
Monk backing Gotabhaya wants Tamil owners to stay away from their lands in interior Batticaloa
17.10.19 19:14   Photo
SL Police resorts to violence in grabbing lands of Tamil fishers in Batticaloa North
16.10.19 23:19   Photo
Chennai Connect and Eezham Tamils reminding Tamil Nadu to assert Tamil geopolitics
15.10.19 23:50  
Colombo destroys dairy-farming economy of Eezham Tamils in Batticaloa
14.10.19 23:48   Photo
Tamil parties in North-East stipulate ‘acid test’ terms to SL presidential candidates
13.10.19 22:15   Photo
SL Governor's latest land grab poses danger to archaeological traces of Eezham Tamils
12.10.19 22:23   Photo
Monks step up campaign against Muslims, want to carve out Sinhala colony in Ampaa'rai
11.10.19 22:07   Photo
Vote for Self-Determination, reject major candidates for more effective boycott
10.10.19 23:31   Photo
SL Police intensifies restrictions on Saiva devotees at disputed ‘chaitya’ hilltop in East
09.10.19 20:17  
Indian Coast Guard trespassed into waters off Jaffna, 18 fishers detained since 03 October
08.10.19 18:43  
Divisional Secretary, TNA MPs must act to release Chegnchoalai lands: civil activist
07.10.19 23:12   Photo
Heinous act by HRCSL: former orphans of Chegnchoalai on the brink of losing lands
06.10.19 12:21  
EPDP joins Jaffna protest against desecration of Neeraaviyadi temple
05.10.19 22:06  
Families inheriting lands from parents refused of land registration in Moothoor East
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=6755