58 Tamils languish in Magazine prison for more than 12 years

[TamilNet, Thursday, 14 April 2011, 10:52 GMT]
Information smuggled out of the notorious Magazine Prison in Borella, Colombo, reveal that 58 Tamil prisoners, 44 of them with no charges filed or charged without any viable court case or witnesses to prove guilt, are being held under the Island's Emergency Regulations in the prison for more than 12 years. One of the inmates told TamilNet that except two of the Tamil inmates who have relatives visiting them, most of the others have no visitor and are inflicted with illnesses arising from torture.

The prisoner appealed to the media to highlight their plight and to seek justice on their behalf.

The informant told TamilNet, the 44 prisoners are taken to the Colombo High Court once every 14-days to mark their presence in the jail, but have no legal representation due to lack of financial resources. "Judges are reluctant to take action to release the inmates due to political compulsion," the informant prisoner said.

One youth from Batticaloa, arrested when he was 17-years old is in the prison for more than 18 years, exceeding the customary 14-years normally served by prisoners with life-imprisonment.

 

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