‘Later date’ ruling for de Silva

National, Normal

SRI LankanHandun Sivanka de Silva will have to wait “to a later date” to find out whether he be granted bail.
De Silva appeared in court with his lawyer yesterday but his case was adjourned in a courtroom that was almost empty.
The National Court, presided by Justice Panuel Mogish, heard submission from de Silva’s last Friday, seeking bail and decision was reserved to this week.
Last Friday’s bail application by De Silva, who had resided in PNG for the past 10 years, is his third attempt.
His lawyer argued in essence, that his client would like to “come out and take care of his family”.
But most particularly, because, he claimed that circumstance had changed.
De Silva’s submissions were that he had a re-registered business entity to run and that his family needed him, as the only provider to take care of them.
He argued that the issue of immigrations was a misunderstanding by the authorities.
“De Silva’s business is re-registered and he has business to be in PNG” was contrary to the prosecutions argument that he did not have valid reasons to be in the country.
His counsel submitted that there was “misleading information” relating to the immigration issues given by the police arresting officers.
De Silva claimed that on this basis that he had been unduly “harassed” by the authorities.
He sought bail, asking the court to grant it with conditions.
His first bail attempt was on Aug 25 before the Deputy Chief Justice Gibbs Salika who heard the application in the morning and ruled at 4pm, refusing the application, with strong comments, stating that the applicant was a “blatant disregard and contempt for and of the courts” and pointed out that the applicant “has flouted the orders of the court”.
The trust that the court had in him when it first granted bail (at the district court during his initial hearings at the lower courts) to him has been abused and misplaced,” Salika said.
De Silva’s charges range from immigration default, firearms possession, discharging firearm, threatening with firearm, possession of pornographic material, producing of pornographic material and refusing arrest.