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GALABADA PAYALAGE SANATH WIMALASIRI VS. OFFICER-IN-CHARGE, POLICE STATION, MARADANA

Read the full judgement here
citation:

SC SPL LA No.304/2009

court:

SUPREME COURT OF SRI LANKA

judges:

WANASUNDERA, PC, J; ALUWIHARE, PC, J; GOONERATNE, J

KEY FACTS:

A person accused two people of engaging in an “indecent act” under Section 365A of the Sri Lankan Penal code. He had witnessed the two persons engaged in oral sex in a car in a public place. Wimalasiri, one of the accused, is a police officer. The police arrested him and brought him before the Magistrate Court.

The witness then turned hostile. Nevertheless, the Court decided that both of the accused were guilty. They were sentenced with imprisonment for one year and a fine of Rs. 1,500.

Wimalasiri appealed before the High Court. The High Court also held that they were guilty and upheld the Magistrate’s sentence. He then appealed to the Supreme Court through a special leave petition. The Supreme Court granted special leave.

ISSUES & DECISION:

The court considered whether the Magistrate and High Courts were correct in disregarding the hostile witness testimony and in their evaluation of the Dock statement. The Court also considered whether the sentence imposed was excessive.

The Court held that the Magistrate and the High Court were correct in not relying on the hostile witness and disregarding his testimony. Further, it declared that they were also right in evaluating the Dock statement.

Additionally, the Court noted that “sodomy” and “buggery” is still considered “indecent activity” and continues to be a crime in Sri Lanka. Finally, the Court increased the sentence from one year to two years.