Accident case: Champika’s lawyers say High Court has no power | Daily News

Accident case: Champika’s lawyers say High Court has no power

The defence in the case filed against former Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka for an alleged motor accident that took place in 2016 at Rajagiriya, raised preliminary objections stating that the Colombo High Court does not have judicial power to maintain the charges against the accused yesterday.

It was said by the defence who appeared for former Minister Patali Champika, his driver Dilum Thusitha Kumara and former Welikada Police OIC Sudath Asmadala when the case was taken up before Colombo High Court Judge Damith Thotawatta yesterday.

President’s Counsel Anuja Premaratne appearing for first accused, former Minister Patali Champika raised preliminary objections over the case and stated that another case was previously filed with the same charges before the Colombo Magistrate’s Court and concluding its proceedings Magistrate’s Court had also imposed a penalty against the suspect.

“However, this indictment was also filed against the same accused for the same charges in another court without withdrawing the penalty imposed against him by the previous court. That penalty should be quashed before filing a new case against the accused. Therefore, this court does not have a judicial power to pursue charges against the accused,” Anuja Premaratne PC said.

President’s Counsel Anil Silva also agreed with the preliminary objection made by Anuja Premaratne PC and he also stated that the Colombo High Court does not have a Judicial Power to maintain the case against the accused.

Senior Deputy Solicitor General informed the court that the prosecution needs some time to respond to the preliminary objections raised by the defence.

Considering the Circumstances, Colombo High Court Judge Damith Thotawatta fixed December 2 to respond to the preliminary objection and the case was also fixed for trial on the same day.

The vehicle bearing No WP-KT 7545 under the Ministry of Finance which was involved in the accident was produced to the court as a case production.

Colombo High Court Judge ordered the release of the vehicle back to the Finance Ministry due to there not being substantial parking space in the court premises.

Accordingly, the Finance ministry was ordered to produce the vehicle before the court on every hearing and on a date set by the Court and also ordered not to modify or hand over the vehicle to someone.

The Attorney General had filed an indictment before the High Court against former MP Patali Champika, his driver Thusith Dilum Kumara and ASP Sudath Asmadala over the hit-and-run accident at Rajagiriya in 2016.

Accordingly, the indictment was filed against former MP Patali Champika on charges of causing grievous injury to a youth named Sandeep Sampath while driving a vehicle in a reckless manner.

The indictment comprising 16 charges was filed against all three accused on charges of fabricating false evidence, conspiracy of fabricating evidence and submitting false reports to the Court. The main charge is relating to conspiring and fabricating false evidence to claim that it was Dilum Thusith Kumara who was driving the vehicle which caused the accident and another charge relates to him allegedly conspiring to conceal evidence in order to protect MP Patali Champika from legal penalty.

ASP Sudath Asmadala was charged with producing a false report to the Colombo Magistrate’s Court in order to protect former MP Patali Champika from legal penalty.

On previous occasions, indictments were served to the all three accused and ordered to be released on bail.

President’s Counsel Anuja Premaratne and President’s Counsel Anil Silva appeared for the defence.

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