The judgment in Jordan: a crime “very serious,” admits the accused freed of the murder of his wife

News 15 August, 2017

    Michael Nguyen

    Tuesday, 15 August 2017 13:34

    Tuesday, 15 August 2017 13:34

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    The Sri Lankan freed of the murder of his wife due to delays in court recognizes that the crime alleged is “very serious”, but he maintains that the judgment of the procedures was fully justified.

    “The seriousness of the offence alone does not ensure that an accused is not entitled to the protection afforded [by the Charter],” write the lawyers of Sivaloganathan Thanabalasingham in their memorandum of appeal filed on Tuesday.

    Thanabalasingham, 32 years old, was accused of having sawed the neck of his wife Anuja Baskaran, August 11, 2012, after several episodes of domestic violence. He had been quickly arrested, but the delays are accumulated in its folder.

    So well that last April, the superior Court ordered the termination of proceedings by virtue of the judgment in Jordan of the supreme Court of Canada. This decision imposes a limit of 18 or 30 months for an accused to be tried, unless a specific exception.

    Since then, Thanabalasingham was returned to Sri Lanka, natal, because of his previous convictions in cases of domestic violence. There is no extradition treaty between the two countries, but the Crown has brought the appeal in calling for a new trial.


    However, for the defense, there is no justification for such a request, especially as it is the Crown itself that is responsible for some of the delays in this folder, indicates to Me that Marie-Hélène Giroux, in his memory.

    The lawyer cites the example of the preliminary investigation, initially scheduled for 10 days, but that is spread out over 18 days, of which 13 are devoted to the proof of the prosecution.

    “It exceeded therefore in itself […] the estimated initial that she had done”, says the defence in the court document.

    The defense had even offered to skip this step, as is done sometimes, but the Crown insisted to proceed, as she wanted Thanabalasingham was cited on a chief of the first-degree murder, rather than murder, not premeditated. At the end of this procedure, the judge had not acquiesced to this request.

    “The facts show that we cannot assign responsibility, time-limits for the defence”, says Me Giroux in his memory.

    For her, the judge of first instance has not committed any error in discharging the accused, in spite of the gravity of the crime and the fact that the company “has any interest in this kind of offence is prosecuted in court”.

    “It must not be forgotten that it is shocking necessarily the collective consciousness that a person who is entitled to the presumption of innocence is imprisoned for years without being judged,” pleads the lawyer who will argue its case in September, before a panel of five judges of the highest court of the province.