Former Defence Attaché at the Sri Lankan High Commission in London, Brigadier Priyanka Fernando, was found guilty at the Westminster Magistrate’s Court today for committing public order offences over the ‘throat-slitting gesture’ in London, 2018.
The Brigadier displayed a warning during a demonstration by LTTE activists in front of the Sri Lankan High Commission in London on February 4, 2018. The incident led to controversy, with pressure for the removal of the Brigadier from office.
It was also reported that Brigadier Fernando was fined £2000, prosecution cost of £1842.80, victim surcharge of £127 & compensation of £450.
Fernando was found guilty of violating Section 4A (1) and (5) of the Public Order Act 1986, with the court stating that his actions and gestures were threatening, caused harassment and that he intended them to be so.
In this October, referring to this case against Brigadier Priyanka Fernando at the Westminister Magistrates’ Court, the Foreign Ministry requested the UK government to honour the diplomatic immunity which he is entitled to as per the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961.
However, the Westminister Magistrates’ Court ruled that the defendant is not protected by diplomatic immunity and delivering today’s verdict, the Senior District Judge said he sees no reason to re-visit that ruling.