(Lanka-e-News - 04.March.2017, 3.00PM) Lankaenews website editor Sandaruwan Senadheera was not present before the Supreme Court yesterday regarding 14 contempt of court applications for allegedly publishing defamatory articles which appeared in Lankaenews defaming the judges from the Apex Court to the Magistrate’s Court castigating their characters.
The Court was informed that Lankaenews website editor is yet to receive notices since he is residing in United Kingdom.
On January 19, Sandaruwan Senadheera and Attorney-at-Law Chandrasiri Seneviratne were noticed to appear before Supreme Court on March 3. However, Attorney-at-law Chandrasiri Seneviratne, the second accused of these applications was present in Court.
Meanwhile, three-judge-Bench comprising Justice Buwaneka Aluvihare, Justice Sisira de Abrew and Justice Anil Goonaratne directed the petitioner to amend the caption of the petitions by putting accused new address in UK. Theses petitions are to be taken up for mention on May 16.
These 14 complaints had been filed by former Deputy Mayor of Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte Municipal Council, Attorney-at-Law Madura Vithanage complaining that there had been a series of articles published appeared in the social media web site/face book named “Lankaenews” in which the judges and the Judicial Institutions had been critically ridiculed and intimidated and at certain instances and there had been scathing attacks on judges commencing from Magistrates to the Chief Justice.
The complainant stated that through the contents of the said articles, the web site/Facebook owner/operator has insulted, defamed, and ridiculed the judges whose names are referred to therein and there is direct and indirect intimidation on judges as well as the judiciary as a whole.
In his petitions, the petitioners cited lankaenews editor Sandaruwan Senadheera as the accused and the Attorney General and the President of Bar Association of Sri Lanka as respondents.
The petitioner is requesting the Court to charge the accused on the offence of contempt of the Supreme Court under Article 105(3) of the Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka and grant an order restraining the accused preventing him from publishing further Contemptuous statements/articles scandalizing the judges or any judicial institution including Supreme
Court and the Judicial Services Commission until the conclusion of this case.
“These articles have attacked on both the judicial conduct as well as the private lives of the judges and caused embarrassment not only to the judges but also to the entire judiciary,” the complainant said.
The complainant stated that “Lankaenews” is a web site owned and maintained by Sandaruwan Senadheera from London, United Kingdom.
He further stated that the contents in the said articles are derogatory of the judiciary and the judges and tantamount to contempt of court punishable under law.
President’s Counsel Hemantha Warnakulasuriya appeared for the petitioner. Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Rajaratnam appeared for the Attorney General.Senior Counsel J.C. Weliamuna appeared for the second accused.
by (2017-03-04 09:34:43)
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