A married woman, a mother of one child was sentenced to death on a majority jury decision by the Ratnapura High Court Judge A. Heiyanthuduwa in connection with the alleged homicide of her husband.
The woman condemned to death was Ulpatha Vidanalage Wasanthi Wijewardena, a resident of Kalalella of the Kahawatte police division.
She had been indicted by the Attorney General under the Penal Code for allegedly burning to death her husband Malaviarachchige Piyadasa alias Premaratne at Kalalella, Kahawatte on or around April, 24, 2006. The case was called before a jury. This was the first time after about five years a majority jury decision was delivered against an accused.
The accused in her statement to police had stated that her husband was an alcoholic and used to beat her everyday. The accused in her statement in court had said that she ran away with her daughter when the husband was burning and returned home about 1 hours later.
The State counsel addressing the jury said though eyewitnesses to the incident were not available, the subsequent behaviour of the accused pointed to the fact that she had killed her husband. Six out of seven jurors gave the verdict that the accused was guilty.
On the verdict of the jury, High Court Judge sentenced the accused to death.