3 August, 2021

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Court Of Appeal Order Leaves CCD Case Against Shani Abeysekera In Tatters

The Court of Appeal tore the police case against Shani Abeysekera to pieces in its bail order, calling the charges a sham designed to ‘prejudice and harm’ the star criminal investigator and former CID Chief by the ‘backers of convicted murderers.”

The Court slammed what it called “extraordinary delays” filing the complaint against Abeysekera and three junior officers who investigated the Mohammed Shiyam murder in 2013. Two witnesses in the trial came forward in 2020, to claim Abeysekera had coerced their testimony and fabricated evidence to implicate DIG Vas Gunewardane who was convicted of the murder by a High Court Trial-at-Bar. The case against Shani Abeysekera is being investigated by the Colombo Crime Division (CCD) which Vas Gunewardane led before he faced trial for murder.

But the Court of Appeal in its 14 page order granting bail to Abeysekera, said the delays strongly demonstrated that”the allegations against the suspect Shani Abeysekera are a result of falsification and embellishment”, and a “creature of afterthought”.

According to the Court of Appeal, complaining about Abeysekera’s conduct during a murder investigation eight years ago cost the complaint the “benefit of the advantage of spontaneity.” The Court of Appeal said the complainants had ample time and ability to make the complaint.

The delayed complaint “smacks of the introduction of a fabricated, false version and an exaggerated account or concocted story involving a set of collaborators or conspirators to unduly cause prejudice and harm to the suspect Shani Abeysekera,” the Court of Appeal said in its order.

The Court of Appeal sits in the Superior Courts Complex in Hulftsdorp, Colombo

The CA Order, written by Justice Bandula Karunaratne, said that the statements provided by witnesses who complained against Abeysekera in 2020 are contradictory to statements they had made in 2014, when the murder probe was underway.

The Court observed that the police had made a “blatant attempt to frame allegations through fabrication of false evidence” against Abeysekera, by reporting the statements of “apparent backers and supporters or collaborators of the convicted murderers” before the Magistrate’s Court of Gampaha.

The Court of Appeal said that based on the material presented to court, no credible evidence had been provided to substantiate the position that Abeysekera had committed offences under the Penal Code, and the Offensive Weapons and Explosives Act. “No credible evidence had been brought to the attention of the Court to substantiate this position or credibly establish a semblance of a prima facie case,” the Court of Appeal said, referring to the CCD Investigation against Abeysekera.

The Court order said that while Abeysekera had been in remand custody for 10 months, there was no cogent material before Court to establish that witnesses had been intimidated by the ex-CID Director.

The order also noted that evidence had been presented to court by Abeysekera’s lawyers that his health was failing.

“Considering the totality of the material placed before us, I am of the considered view that the suspect Shani Abeysekera be enlarged on bail, subject to strict conditions imposed by this Court,” the order said.

Read the Court of Appeal Order of June 16, 2021 in full here:

The witnesses came forward to complain against Abeysekera only after the election of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in November 2019. DIG Vas Gunewardane, the convicted murderer, is a close associate of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. Colombo Telegraph learns that as Defence Secretary in 2013/2014, Rajapaksa tried hard to scuttle the Mohammed Shiyam murder probe, when Abeysekera and his team nabbed DIG Vas Gunewardane for the killing. Vas Gunewardane’s appeal is pending before a five judge bench of the Supreme Court, and the witch-hunt launched against Abeysekera is tied to attempts to have the case thrown out of court, Colombo Telegraph learns.

Former Colombo Crime Division DIG Vas Gunewardane was convicted for murder and sentenced to death by a High Court Trial at Bar in November 2015

Damaging the credibility of Shani Abeysekera’s investigations meets a twin objective for President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. For nearly two years now, the President has been struggling to justify a pardon for Duminda Silva, another convicted murderer on death row. Silva has exhausted all appeals available to him under the Sri Lankan criminal justice system. As Monitoring MP to the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in 2010-2012, Silva had an especially intimate relationship with the current president and former defence secretary. During his time as Monitoring MP, Silva used his influence at MoD to wage war on rivals of his narcotics trafficking operation, using the Sri Lankan forces, with the blessings of then Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa Colombo Telegraph learns. Silva continues to run one of the most efficient drug-trafficking operations from within prison walls in Welikada. Since President Rajapaksa’s election in 2019, Silva has served his death row sentence in the hospital wing of the Welikada prison, where he is afforded all creature comforts.

It was Shani Abeysekera’s investigation that led to Duminda Silva’s conviction for the murder of Premachandra by a High Court Trial at Bar. If his investigations are cast into doubt and the former CID Director is tried and jailed for falsifying evidence, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa will win the leverage he needs to issue a presidential pardon for Duminda Silva, without inviting a hailstorm of public outrage. A well-known drug lord in Colombo, Silva is widely unpopular among the Sri Lankan middle classes, although he continues to enjoy some grassroots support in Kolonnawa and Central Colombo areas, where his gangs run illegal narcotics. (Nimal Ratnaweera)

 

 

 

 

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Latest comments

  • 65
    0

    Three cheers for these judge’s with backbone who did not run away recusing themselves with excuses.

    • 10
      0

      I wonder IF this is correct?
      https://www.dailymirror.lk/latest_news/Shani-Abeysekara-further-remanded-till-June-30/342-214260

      Does this say it all? “The witnesses came forward to complain against Abeysekera only after the election of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in November 2019”.

      I do hope Shani will one day be compensated for this disgusting treatment.

    • 10
      0

      Let look back for everyone s knowledge.
      Please watch the video below.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-wfobOY56k

      You are mistaken – I was not the lead of the army…. hik hik… hik… this man is appropriate even to run a FUEL STATION….
      .
      People with some sanity, please let all these go through your little heads. .. thank you..

      • 12
        0

        Let s LOOK back !…See, how he spoke then and how he acts today… my granny repeated… dog would never stop doggy acts even if you would put the dog in golden cage.

      • 4
        0

        This country is a pariah state.
        .
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UszeREK5Lgc

        We have been dragged ot this level by a bunch of thugs.

  • 53
    0

    Am I correct in sensing an amazing turnaround in the attitude of the Judiciary towards Gota?
    .
    It is true that many of the comments that I make may seem to have a political slant, but guys like me, an old man, have never been “into” politics; we want the decencies that we once took for granted to prevail once more.
    .
    Thank you, Justice Bandula Karunaratne for the order, and thank you, Nimal Ratnaweera for the report.

    • 18
      1

      The BBC is giving plenty of coverage of these remarkable happenings:
      .
      https://www.bbc.com/sinhala/sri-lanka-57465497
      .
      This is one of the few news items that we can greet with unalloyed joy! Other stories for the same source are rather more worrying:
      .
      https://www.bbc.com/sinhala/sri-lanka-57462862

      That’s about organic fertiliser. Gota said it so clearly that the entire country got talking about it. He’s so stubborn, he may go ahead with it!

    • 5
      0

      Dear S_M:

      My impression is that Justice Bandula Karunaratne is an exception. Perhaps it’s because (as far as I could dig) he hasn’t been a Rajapaksa crony. I believe that the second justice Rathnapriya U.S. Gurusinghe, an appointee of Gotabaya Rajapaksa, either mustered up the courage in light of the international scrutiny or could not refute the findings of the co-justice Bandula Karunaratne.

      As an Appeals Court Justice presiding over a bail denial, Justice Karunaratne seems to have gone above and beyond to make some conclusions on the evidence produced by the CID, essentially accusing the CID of foul play.

      Shani Abeyesekera, Sugath Mendis and a third accused were all granted bail… We can truly rejoice when the cases are rightfully dismissed.

    • 12
      0

      The root of our problems is the continued refusal to accept the minorities as equal first-class citizens of this country. On paper we have a great constitution in which human rights are guaranteed and all ethnicities/ religions are equal. But on the ground, not even a Sinhala Catholic will ever be PM, let alone a Muslim. Seats reserved for “clergy” in buses are really only for Buddhist monks. Even Sinhala criminals are bumped off by a government that decries cow slaughter. In short, HYPOCRISY is the name of the game. Does the government think that the European Union doesn’t know what is actually going on in the country? The release of Shani Abeysekera is a sign that the UNHRC and the EU between them are knocking some sense into the arrogant self-important idiots currently running the country

    • 7
      0

      Panini, while this “turn-around” is most welcome, it will remain a mere speck, until a broader coalition of interests align against the bunch of thugs who we, collectively, elected to screw us.

      Such a coalition must include professionals from the legal, medical, academic communities; as well as senior officers of the police, the military and administrative arms of the public sector, all aligned under a single principle of corruption-free and ethical governance, which must be underwritten by a broad societal framework of secularism and meritocracy. Such a framework MUST be established asgoverning principle of ALL political parties.

      “Dream on, you fool”, you might say.

  • 45
    0

    “calling the charges a sham designed to ‘prejudice and harm’ the star criminal investigator and former CID Chief by the ‘backers of convicted murderers.”

    Couldn’t have been more clear and powerful than that. My thanks to the two judges. We can still have hope in the judiciary.

  • 53
    0

    CT your service to law and order in the country is commendable. I am longing to see the day Shani Abeysekera is completely exonerated and free.

    • 9
      0

      Nathan,
      .
      That is the reason we hang on this platform also from being various geographical locations.
      :
      SA deserves to be respected by anyone with some sanity. He risked his life for the nation.
      :
      So called ” alleged criminals” became WEERAYAS OF THE DAY though for limited period…. … leaving all the voices that rose against the instutionalized injustice traditions. We as a nation should be shameful to allow this repeating as of today.

    • 7
      0

      Read the entire judgement which is thorough and comprehensive. Three cheers to the learned judges!!

  • 6
    0

    The perpetrators of false accusations against Shani Abeysekera should be charged for these offences in court.
    Shani A should be paid compensation by the state for wrongful confinement and suffering.
    He should allowed co continue his work without hindrrance.

    This is what happens in other countries.

  • 5
    0

    Poor Babdula Karunaratne can forget about his elevation to supreme court until such time two times war criminal and thief at large Nandasena is the President with 20A.
    Or is it Nandasena used Bandula Karunaratne to save his face after EU parliament decision to reconsider GSP plus which will affect his funding buddies like Omar’s of Brandix who created the Brandix cluster of Corona by their greed which ended up in social spread of Corona

  • 2
    1

    Oh but how sad. The short-lived relief.
    The bail lifting order not received by Gampaha Magistrate who re-remands Shani till June 30th. Yes 30th. Surely this Magistrate is up on the news – he could have remanded him for just a few days till Appeal Court Order received instead of two weeks, but then this is SL.

  • 3
    0

    It appears that Justice Bandula Gunaratne and C.D Gurusinghe have opened a new chapter in upholding at least a Partial Justice to Shani Abesekera, despite the rule of
    the present government. I say Partial Justice because condition stipulated for the bail seems to be rather severe?

  • 7
    0

    Though he got bail he is still in remand because the Gampaha judge did not receive bail order , relating to release, until yesterday evening. More interesting news from Lanka. Plans to move no confidence motion against Gommanpilla by opposition for fuel price hike.(they are trying to get some SLPP members to join rank. SLPP Secretary is against Gommanpilla raising , Namal has no say, Goman says it was the decision of Rajapaksas and he was just reading the the statement like a loyal slave. Government officially admitted to raising to save foreign exchange, develop health and education ?? to get vaccines ?? .State Minister Godayahewa says prices will be reduced soon. First it was big/dirty mouthed Wimal who has now been effectively muted /shut down , apparently now a days he opens his gutter mouth only during meal time. Now Goman who has been trapped into appearing the “bad guy”. This guy used to play dirty politics for a living has now got his own medicine. Next will be disheveled Vasideva. Karma is a real B- – – h. SL invites EU parliamentarians to visit Lanka to see progress. What that may be ?? The most concerning thing to me is every days the news has reports scores of people arrested with hardcore drugs ( Hashish, crystal meth and synthetics) of unbelievable amounts for a tiny island. It’s a clear indication , we already are a transit point for drug trafficking. Most arrest are from rural and suburbs, carriers desperate for income.

  • 4
    0

    I wonder IF this is correct?
    https://www.dailymirror.lk/latest_news/Shani-Abeysekara-further-remanded-till-June-30/342-214260

    Does this say it all? “The witnesses came forward to complain against Abeysekera only after the election of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in November 2019”.

    I do hope Shani will one day be compensated for this disgusting treatment.

    • 3
      0

      sorry! inadvertently repeated

  • 5
    0

    While I am happy about the outcome, I will say “don’t count your chickens before they hatch”

  • 7
    0

    More fun. When readers here were busy discussing about how rural India looks like , Lanka president Gotha him self showed up to receive $ 100 million from India in loans. To add, Politician Ranjith came out swinging his holy sword accusing Rajapaksas being worse than MS/RW. Goman’s case has taken all kind of abrupt turns. Prof Tissa is now wailing stating there is no more communication between MR and allies. He wants fixer BR to stitch it for them ASAP on his return from unknown destination. In the mean time another prof Rohana says all SLFP members (there is no dearth for educated buffoons in Lankan politics) should leave the pact immediately. Last but not least pimp RW will return next week after a brief vacation. (may be he too can help in fixing). Hope Ganasara too will accompany, to make this drama complete.

  • 6
    0

    My question is Politician Ranjith challenged MS by asking ” wasn’t he ashamed to be fully dressed”. So what will be his challenge to Rajapaksas, now that he is accusing them of being worse than MS/RW. Anyway he cannot challenge the royals, who are already naked. SLFP senior Rohana, said if Goman had to resign for fuel price hick, then all the current ministers should resign taking responsibility for dismantling their ministries. Health Minister for pandemic spread, Port and Shipping Minister for ship wreck, Education Minister for break down, Agri for fertilizer, minister in charge for sugar/oil scam – – -. Rajapaksas supporters do you’ll have ant answers for this professor.

  • 1
    0

    This is another drama just fool the people,Gampaha magistrate ordering not to release them and have them on till.30th.sad

  • 4
    0

    In Gothas land anyone who challeges his authority will be counting thier days Judges inlcuded. Before long they will be picked up in White Vans never to be seen again. The only person who called Gotha you U.h.k. Putha and still roaming around is Wijeyada Rajapaksa who is owed a duty of care by MR.

  • 1
    1

    Unfortunately, the leaders of this police state will never learn lessons. Political opponents, activists, good citizens who stand up and say things are being done wrong, officials who want the law respected, and the minority who are used as scapegoats, will continue to be arrested without charges, and left to languish without proper legal representation, or have their day in court.
    We have sunk to new lows.

  • 3
    1

    The people who respect Judiciary for not being politically aligned say CONGRATULATIONS for the verdict by CA. It is a shame on the part of GOTA. He is involved in many cases. It is a shame for the country to vote him as Presidnet, Heis answerable to the International community. He has the same attitude as the Communist Chinese government That is the reason why he is going behind China. If the MPs are true to the voters and Justice they should bring in NO confidence motion aginst the present President. . When he Defence Secy he paid Salary to the terrorist who were responsible for Easter Sunday attack, No one is prepared to investigate further into this matter, He is a highly vindictive person by calls himself Buddhist

  • 0
    0

    ‘Court Of Appeal Order Leaves CCD Case Against Shani Abeysekera In Tatters’
    .
    But how is this possible in a ‘Failed State’ and ‘Military Dictatorship’?

  • 0
    0

    The law is very turf now a person asked ‘Dan Sapada’ he is being charged and on bail,then roam the residence of Harin Fernando that gives the warning despite the covid you all under radar who ever it is

  • 0
    0

    To update on my previous comment. Today news says more than 50 Kg of Hashish worth 52 million was seized while being transported. Three including a SI was arrested, The mastermind is apparently living abroad and had smuggled in large quantities prior to this seizure. This was to be distributed with in WP. When PC becomes functional these businesses can be run without such scrutiny. Thanks to Rajapaksas for creating investment friendly environment. Gotha says on June 11th wrong figures of Covid mortality/morbidity was presented, when numbers were revised after realizing months of under reporting. He said this in turn extended the lock down. Today chief Epidemiologist Dr. Sudath was transferred out. Have anyone taken a look at latest map of Covid Risk in Lanka. Appears as though no place is spared. There is also an opinion/article written by Kamanthi. W. ” Covid death and deaths with Covid”. Titled statistical blunders expose administrative weakness ” which actually applies to countries like India. What actually took place in Lanka was “statistical distortion expose Rajapaksas crookedness.” As I mentioned before in Rajapaksas splendor world ” a pregnant lady dies of Covid complications is a death due to pregnancy and not Covid”. After a long wait my wife received her first AZ shot in our own hospital. Government has now permitted distributing privately, by hospitals for people who are 18 and above.

  • 0
    0

    OMG. this unbelievable. President Gotha says only 15 died on June 11 and not 101 as officially reported before. He further said it was a mistake in counting made by health authorities. We are talking about dead people not mere numbers. Can there be an error in counting 86 dead people. Today the death rate is still above 50. It has been same for past 2 weeks or so. Can Gotha explain how on earth it dropped to 15 on that particular day when he made the decision to extend lock down. This is just another manufactured BS to find scapegoat for his actions. Hence chief of Epidemiology was transferred out. I well remember,almost a year ago around this time, some self claimed health experts here in CT too questioned, how can a government distort the numbers of dead people ???. May be they can enlighten us.

  • 0
    0

    Highest number of infection reported in Colombo yesterday ( 562 reported by NOPPCO), World death toll passed 4 million yesterday, 55 death were reported in past 24 hours, Indian variant was found in few new cases, 11 year old lion reported to have Covid in Dehiwala zoo, more than 75% ICU beds are still occupied by Covid patients according to treating doctors and yet Rajapaksas continue to play their number games,

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