Gopi released, Court denies protection
[TamilNet, Thursday, 27 October 2005, 00:01 GMT]
Ms Sarojini Kusala Weerawardene, Colombo Chief Magistrate Wednesday ordered the release of Mr.Kathiramalai Vaitheehan alias Gopi alias Veerapandiyan who was remanded on reports from the Jaffna police that he was involved in the abduction and murder of Mr. Charles Wijewardene, Jaffna Senior Superintendent of Police, at Inuvil in Jaffna district on 4th August 2005, legal sources said.
For security reasons the case came up for inquiry in the special court in Welikada prison. The Chief Magistrate directed the Police to release the suspect on a report filed by the Attorney General that there was no evidence against the suspect to file indictment against him, legal sources said.
The Attorney General's report indicated that none of the witnesses including police officers were able to identify Mr Gopi at the identification parade held in Colombo Chief Magistrate's Court, legal sources said.
Mr.Gopi immediately begged court through his lawyer Mr.K.V.Thavarasa to provide protection to his life after the release, legal sources said.
Thereafter Mr.Thavarasa on behalf of his client submitted to court that Mr.Gopi was brought to Colombo by air from Jaffna after his arrest. Mr.Thavarasa begged court to order the police to adopt the same method in sending Mr.Gopi back to Jaffna, legal sources said.
However the Chief Magistrate refused the application stating that she has power to release the suspect but not to provide security to him thereafter, legal sources said.
The Chief Magistrate refused another request of Mr.Thavarasa to suspend her release order for one day till he makes an arrangement to ensure protection for Mr.Gopi to return Jaffna safely after his release, legal sources said.
However, the Chief Magistrate ordered the Police and the lawyer who appeared for Mr.Gopi to inform court on 6 January about the action taken to provide security to Mr.Gopi, legal sources said.