Sri Lanka’s special high court to hear corruption cases to open on July 4

Sri Lanka’s special high court to hear corruption cases to open on July 4

Colombo, June 14 ( – Sri Lanka’s first special high court to try high profile bribery and corruption cases will open on July 4, Cabinet Spokesman Rajitha Senaratne said.

Senaratne said the first court will open in capital Colombo and two more will open before the end of September to clear the backlog of high profile cases including those against members of the former government.

The special courts will hear cases involving money laundering, bribery and large financial crimes, dishonest misappropriation of property, criminal breach of trust by public servants and dishonestly receiving stolen property.

Last month, the Sri Lankan Parliament approved the setting up of special high courts with 119 legislators voting in favour and 52 against.

Justice Minister Thalatha Atukorale said the new courts will reduce pressure on the criminal justice system and help speed up hearings.

The choice of which cases will be taken up by the new courts will be made by the Chief Justice to ensure that no political pressure is involved, the minister added.

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, recently said that as a government, strong decisions will be taken to control and eradicate bribery and corruption in government sector and other areas.

Sirisena warned that law and order would be applied on anyone who was caught in bribery or corruption, irrespective of their status.