Out­rage as Sri Lanka Pres­i­dent par­dons killer of Swedish teen

Muscat Daily - - WORLD -

Colombo, Sri Lanka - Sri Lanka’s Pres­i­dent has par­doned a deathrow pris­oner who mur­dered a Swedish teenager just a week be­fore he leaves of­fice, of­fi­cials said on Sun­day, in a move that sparked na­tional out­rage.

Con­victed killer Jude Jayamaha, from a wealthy, high­pro­file fam­ily, walked out of We­likada prison on Satur­day fol­low­ing the highly un­usual amnesty granted by Pres­i­dent Maithri­pala Sirisena.

Sirisena, who is step­ping down after Satur­day’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tion at which he is not a can­di­date, an­nounced last month he was con­sid­er­ing a re­quest to grant Jayamaha a par­don.

Vic­tim Yvonne Jon­s­son, who was hol­i­day­ing in Sri Lanka, was beaten to death at a high-rise apart­ment in Colombo in 2005 after she and Jayamaha had an ar­gu­ment. The court had been told her skull was frac­tured into 64 pieces.

Jayamaha was ini­tially sen­tenced to 12 years in prison. He ap­pealed to a higher court, which re­jected his plea and in­stead sen­tenced him to death, which was reaf­firmed by the Supreme Court in 2014.

Jon­s­son’s sis­ter Caro­line wrote in a Face­book post about her con­cerns over Jayamaha’s par­don be­fore the amnesty an­nounce­ment. ‘ He showed and con­tin­ues to show ab­so­lutely no re­morse for what he has done’, she wrote. ‘We’ve worked hard to re­build our lives and here we are, go­ing into 15 years, still fight­ing for jus­tice. Un­for­tu­nately, we now have to pre­pare our­selves for the worst pos­si­ble out­come, the par­don of my sis­ter’s mur­derer’.

Many Sri Lankans took to so­cial me­dia to con­demn Sirisena.

‘Mon­strous act by a failed pres­i­dent’, said a Twit­ter user iden­ti­fied as Thass.


Sri Lankan Pres­i­dent Maithri­pala Sirisena

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