Swiss Embassy local staffer, Garnia Bannister Francis today handed over her official phone to the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court and the Court is yet to decide on producing it to the government analyst for further investigations.
When the case was taken up in Courts, Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne said that the order regarding handing over of the official phone of the suspect to the government analyst, will be delivered on January 21.
Counsel Upul Kumarapperuma, representing the Swiss Embassy local staffer, informed Court that there were official data and recordings of the Swiss Embassy in his client’s official phone and there was a risk of handing of the phone to the government analyst.
He said according to the Diplomatic Privileges Act there was a problem in handing over his client’s phone to the government analyst.
However, representing the Attorney General’s (AG) Department, Senior State Counsel (SSC) Janaka Bandara questioned the defence party's authority to hamper with the investigation which was going to be conducted by the government analyst regarding the matter.
After hearing the submission made by both parties, the Colombo Chief Magistrate said she requires some time to study the matter and would deliver the order on the next hearing date.
The Magistrate also ordered the suspect Garnia Bannister Francis to report to the CID on the last Sunday of each month.
On December 30 last year, Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne released the embassy staffer on bail under two personal bail bonds of Rs 500,000 each. However, her foreign travels were banned and her passport was taken into the custody of the court.
Francis was arrested on December 16 by the CID and produced before the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court as per the directions of the Attorney General.
The AG had instructed the CID to arrest the individual in charge of fabricating false statement to the CID. (Yoshitha Perera)