Embracing, kissing, touching female clerk lands HR manager in jail for 7 years

Colombo, June 25 (Daily Mirror) - The Court of Appeal has imposed seven years of rigorous imprisonment on a Human Resource Manager of a private company for committing the offence of sexual harassment against a female clerk by embracing, touching, and kissing her face and lips.

In addition, the accused was ordered to pay compensation of Rs. 750,000 to the victim.

The Court of Appeal made this order pursuant to an appeal filed by the aggrieved party challenging the High Court judgment dated September 16, 2015, to acquit the accused from three offences relating to sexual harassment that come under section 345 of the Penal Code.

After trial, the High Court acquitted the accused on the basis that he was giving the benefit of the doubt in favour of the accused. The aggrieved party, the victim who faced the incidents of sexual harassment, had filed this appeal against this acquittal.

The Court of Appeal two-judge-bench comprising Justices Sampath Abayakoon and P. Kumararatnam found the accused guilty on three counts preferred against him. The Court of Appeal further held that the prosecution has proved beyond reasonable doubt, the three counts preferred against the accused.

The victim has been working as a clerk attached to the human resource section of a private company. The accused was the Human Resource Manager under whom she has worked. In her appeal, the victim pointed out that the main reason for the acquittal had been the alleged delay by the aggrieved party to lodge a complaint in this regard to the police.

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