Prosecution allowed time
By Hansi Nanayakkara
Colombo High Court Judge Damith Thotawatta yesterday (2) deferred further hearing of the case filed against ex-Minister of Health Rajitha Senaratne and former head of the State Pharmaceutical Corporation (CPC) Rumy Mohammad to 28 April.
The two have been charged with conducting a media conference and levelling spurious allegations against President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
The State Counsel appearing for the prosecution urged Justice Thotawatta to grant them one month’s time to facilitate the process of handing over the case files to the defence. Taking the request into consideration the Court fixed further proceedings of the trial to the said date. When the case was taken up the two accused Senaratne and Mohammad who are presently out on bail were present in Court.
The first and second suspects named in the case, filed before the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court, Sarath Kumara and Athula Sanjeewa Madanayake have been acquitted from the charges filed against them and released from the trial and have been named as State witnesses in the ongoing case before the High Court. The Attorney General has indicted Senaratne and Mohammad on 14 counts and on charges of casting aspersions on the character of then Presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa by staging a press conference on 10 November 2019 and revealing details regarding acts of murder, abduction, torture, concealment of information, stealing Euro and gold owned by Prabakaran and for violating provisions contained in Sections 190 and 169 of the Penal Code and Presidential Election Act No. 80 through their actions.