SL CoA | Appellate Court not to interfere with findings of Trial Judge who has a better opportunity of observing demeanor and deportment of witnesses

Court of Appeal of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka: A Division Bench of K. K. Wickremasinghe and K. Priyantha Fernando, JJ. dismissed an appeal for setting aside the judgment of the High Court of Badulla.

 The accused-appellant was indicted in the High Court of Badulla, for committing rape on one Wasana Sandamali on or about 28.11.2008 at Bandarawela, an offence punishable under Section 364 (1) of the Penal Code as amended. The High Court Judge convicted the accused for the offense of rape and punished and fined him accordingly.

Aggrieved by the said judgment, the appellant preferred this appeal.

The counsel for the appellant, AAL Tenny Fernando contended that the story of the prosecutrix was highly improbable and that the learned High Court Judge has misdirected himself with regard to the conflict of evidence between medical expert and the prosecutrix thus making the story doubtful.

The prosecutrix, in her evidence, had explained the reason as to why she had to pretend going for a movie with the appellant and the High Court Judge was of the view that any victim in a situation like that would try to inform the incident to a close relative and therefore, the prosecutrix in the instant case had acted in the same manner which was justifiable and he further explained that in the law does not require corroboration from a prosecutrix unless her version of evidence appears to be unreliable and inconsistent.The High Court Judge found no cogent evidence and refused the defence version of the story.

The Court while dismissing the appeal and affirming the sentence elaborated that the law is of the opinion that the appellate Court will not interfere with the findings of the Trial Judge who in fact has a better opportunity of observing the demeanor and deportment of witnesses. [Manatunga Mudiyanselage Nishantha Manatunga v. Attorney General, C.A. Case No: CA 184 of 2014, decided on 01-11-2019]

Join the discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.