Home / Front Page/ IGP, ex-Defence Secy released on bail

IGP, ex-Defence Secy released on bail

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Wednesday, 10 July 2019 00:20




  • Colombo Chief Magistrate says no grounds for murder charges
  • Finds fault with investigators for not recording statements from suspects 
  • Says as Presidential Committee was not appointed under relevant Act its report can only be used as basic information  

By Manopriya Gunasekera  

Colombo Chief Magistrate yesterday granted bail to former Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando and Inspector General of Police (IGP) Pujith Jayasundera saying there was not enough grounds to charge them with murder. 

Former Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando and IGP Pujith Jayasundara were remanded on charges of criminal negligence and murder for failing to prevent the terrorist attacks on Easter Sunday. However, Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne stated that there was insufficient evidence to substantiate the murder charges presented against them by the Attorney General. 

Hemasiri Fernando 
Pujith Jayasundara 

During the hearing the Magistrate said the court does not exist to function as demanded by the investigators and questioned as to why no statements were taken from Jayasundera and Fernando before they were charged with murder. 

The Magistrate also said the information presented to court indicated that no proper investigation had been made before charges were framed against the suspects and after granting bail she instructed the relevant officials to inform Fernando and Jayasundera to present themselves at the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) to provide a statement.       

Accordingly, the Magistrate decided that there was no reasonable basis for the suspects to be charged with murder and negligence causing serious property damage and ordered to release them on bail.

The Magistrate released the IGP Jayasundera and Fernando on a personal bail of Rs. 500,000 each. Both Fernando and Jayasundera were not present in Court despite a directive from the Prisons Commissioner as they were receiving treatment in hospital. 

The Magistrate told Court that even though information uncovered from some Presidential Commissions could be presented as evidence in court if they were appointed under the Presidential Commission of Inquiry Act, the fact that the Presidential Commission appointed to investigate the Easter Sunday attacks had been done without such due process meant that its report could only be used as basic information in building the case. 

After making this determination, the Magistrate also said that even though some information had been conveyed by the head of State Intelligence Service to the IGP and former Defence Secretary, it had no specific information and was not done in a way that conveyed an urgency that demanded prompt action.  She questioned as to how the two officials could have acted when there was no confirmed information to hand without risking public panic. She also said, based on the evidence presented so far, that while Fernando and Jayasundera may not have acted 100% competently they also could not be held responsible for criminal negligence. 

As there was no indication of public unrest if the Fernando and Jayasundera were granted bail, the Magistrate said she decided to do so.         


Share This Article

Facebook Twitter


1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.


Today's Columnists

Expand employer-backed childcare to close the gender gap in Sri Lanka

Friday, 19 July 2019

In Sri Lanka, women’s formal workforce participation is at only 36%, compared with 75% for men. Sri Lanka could raise its gross domestic product by as much as 20% in the long-run by closing the gender gap in the workforce, according to one estimate

Who should be our next president?

Friday, 19 July 2019

After the recent terrorist attacks and the subsequent violence unleashed against innocent Muslims by racists, Sri Lankans are searching for a leader who can save the country. Many have lost faith in the leaders, due to the breakdown in the security a

The messed-up lives

Friday, 19 July 2019

It can be seen that there is a serious mess-up not only in the State and the social system in Sri Lanka, but also in the lives of the people. People of Sri Lanka are having smiling faces, yet those who live happily are very rare. You will find that u

Reimagining our reality: the last best hope for us?

Friday, 19 July 2019

Imagination can be a powerful tool for shaping everyday reality. We use it to construct everything from the mundane to the mystic. A down-to-earth example would be our subscription to the idea of the intrinsic value and worth of every human being. I

Columnists More