Tanagalle beach resort murder convicts’ appeal re-fixed for trial

By Chitra Weerarathne

The two special leave to appeal applications filed by the four Tangalle Beach Resort murder convicts and the Attorney General were both called before the Court of Appeal yesterday and re-fixed for trial on April 28, 2016.

 The appellants want the convictions of murder and rape, along with the consequential sentence of 20 years rigorous imprisonment set aside. The Attorney General has appealed to get the sentence enhanced.

 The convicted appellants are Sampath Vidana Pathirana, former chairman of the Tangalle Pradeshiya Sabha, Lahim Kelum Udawattage Saman Deshapriya and Praneeth Satharasinghe.

They were convicted by the Colombo High Court for the murder of British national Khuram Shaikh and the rape of his Russian girlfriend Victoria Alexandrova.

The High Court sentenced the convicts to 20 years rigorous imprisonment. The convicts subsequently appealed to the Court of Appeal against the sentence and conviction.

Senior State Counsel Thusith Mudalige appeared for the Attorney General in the hearing before the Court of Appeal.

The Bench comprised Justice H. N. J. Perera and Justice Kumudini Wickramasinghe.

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