Weeping and wailing as 10 men indicted for murdering a three-wheeler driver
Weeping relatives disturbed the quiet of the Kandy Courts when death sentence was passed on ten accused in the murder of a three-wheeler driver by a gang of fourteen originally accused. This is the first time that the death sentence was passed on ten persons in the Kandy Courts.
In a grim atmosphere, with lawyers and court officials standing and fans and the air-conditioning switched off, Kandy High Court Judge Manilal Waidyatillke handed down the death sentence on the ten accused and then broke the pen with which he had written the sentence.
Sentence of death by hanging was passed for a murder which occurred on April 8, 2004 in the Rattota Police area. Originally there were 14 accused in this case where Nayake Aiya Muthukumaran, a three-wheeler driver was murdered by the gang. It was revealed that Muthukumaran was hiding in a shrub, when the gang had attacked him until he succumbed to his injuries.
Each of the accused was also sentenced to six months rigorous imprisonment.The third, fourth and ninth accused were acquitted and the eighth accused had died when the trial was taken up for hearing.In this case the accused were R.M.Tissa Banda, A.R.M.Wije Bandara, Nagalingam Puniyamuthu alias Waitu, Levaluma Wijeyakanthi alias Gemini alias Sihim, Karuppiah Yogeswaran alias Silithu, Thangiah Selvambara, Sinniah Ramalingam ( dead ), Hewa Paranambage Ranjith Jinasiri alias Amy Aiyya, Letchaweman Yogarajah alias Alli, Sivagnanam Siva alias Kovil Siva, Paramanathan Abdulla and Rajadurai Selvaraja aias Soku
State Counsel Charaka Dharmasiri prosecuted.