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Colombo High Court Judge R.Gurusinghe Acquits Basil Rajapaksa and three others from five charges of misappropriating Rs 2,291 Million “Divaneguma” funds without calling for defence evidence as “prosecution had not proven the charges against the accused beyond reasonable doubt”

By T. Farook Thajudeen

Colombo High Court yesterday released Basil Rajapaksa and three others from a case of misappropriating public funds without calling for defence evidence as pleaded by the defence counsel.

High Court Judge R. Gurusinghe acquitted the four accused, which was former Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa, former Ministry Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayathilaka, Divinaguma Development Department former Director General Kithsiri Ranawaka and Divinaguma Development Department former Deputy Director General Bandula Thilakaratna from the charges of misappropriating public funds.

The accused were indicted under five charges by the Attorney General for committing the fraud amounting to Rs. 2,991 million of the Divinaguma Development Department funds while distributing steel roofing sheets to Divinaguma Beneficiaries during the 2015 Presidential Election period.

On the conclusion of the prosecution evidence before the Colombo High Court the defence counsel pleaded to acquit the accused without calling for defence evidence since the prosecution had not proven the charges against the accused beyond reasonable doubt.

Yesterday High Court Judge R. Gurusinghe, while acquitting all the four suspects from the five charges indicted against them by the Attorney General, observed that the prosecution had not proven the charges against the accused beyond reasonable doubt.

Courtesy:Daily FT

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