Emil Ranjan sentenced to death; Rangajeewa acquitted

Former Superintendent of Magazine Prison Lamahewage Emil Ranjan was sentenced to death today by Colombo High Court Trial-at-Bar over the killing of eight inmates on November 09, 2012.

However, first accused Inspector of Police Neomal Rangajeewa of Police Narcotics Bureau was ordered to be acquitted and released from all charges as prosecution failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

Trial-at-Bar bench comprising three High Court judges Gihan Kulathunga (President), Pradeep Hettiarachchi and Manjula Thilakarathna unanimously decided to convict Emil Ranjan for committing murder while ordering to acquit and release Neomal Rangajeewa from all charges.

The High Court Judges read out the sentence ordering Lamahewage Emil Ranjan to be taken to the Welikada Prison and within the four walls of the prison that on a day and time appointed by the President that he be hanged by the neck until he is dead.

The Attorney General had filed indictments against Inspector of Police Rangajeewa, Superintendent of Magazine Prison Lamahewage Emil Ranjan and Indika Sampath, an officer attached to the Prisons intelligence unit in connection with the Welikada Prison Riot under 33 counts including committing murder, conspiring to commit murder after being members of unlawful assembly.

The court had decided to proceed the trial in the absentia of the third accused Indika Sampath who is absconding court since the inception of the CID investigations.

The eight prison inmates who were killed in the incident are Kankanmalage Malinda Nilendra Pelpola alias Malan , Attapattu Sangakkara Nirmala Atapattu, Mohammed Wijaya rohana alias Gundu, Chinthamani Mohottige Thushara Chandana alias Kalu Thushara, Asarappulige Jothipala alias Ponna Kapila, Harshan Sri Manakeerthi Perera alias Manju sri , Raigamage Susantha Perera alias Mala Susantha, Devamullage Malith Sameera Perera alias Konda Amila.