A driver of a luxury bus who had allegedly raped a young passenger travelling to Colombo at the Pettah bus stand was sentenced to twenty years rigorous imprisonment by the Colombo High Court yesterday.
High Court Judge Upali Abeyratne convicted the accused Samarakone Arachchige Savindra of Pitipana South, Kiriwaththuduwa for committing rape on a girl on May 24, 2005 at Bastian Mawatha in Pettha. The accused who was the owner of a bus plying between Tanamalwila and Colombo had raped the girl who was returning from work at a garment factory in Katunayake.
During the trial it was revealed that the accused had driven the bus carrying the young woman and had stopped it at the Gunasinghapura private bus stand. After dropping the other passengers there he had taken the girl to Bastian Mawatha and raped her.
After the incident the accused had threatened her with bodily harm if she revealed the incident to anyone. However, she had noted down the vehicle number and made a complaint to the police.
When the indictment was read out the accused pleaded not guilty but at the end of the trial the court held that the prosecution had proved its case beyond any reasonable doubt.
Court also imposed a fine of Rs. 25,000 in default two years RI and ordered a compensation of Rs. 500,000 in default and five years RI. The sentence is to be served concurrently.
Senior State Counsel Navaratne Marasinghe led the prosecution.