Lanka court acquits child soldier-turned-lawmaker

Colombo, Jan 13: A former LTTE child soldier-turned-politician was acquitted by a court in Sri Lanka on Wednesday in the 2005 murder case of a senior ethnic Tamil lawmaker at the height of the country’s bloody civil war.
Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, 45, was accused of killing Tamil National Alliance (TNA) lawmaker Joseph Pararajasingham. Batticaloa High Court Judge S Susaidasan ordered the dismissal of the case filed against Chandrakanthan alias Pillayan who had earlier been released on bail, media reported. Four other suspects in the case were also acquitted.
Pararajasingham was killed by unidentified gunmen when he was attending a Christmas midnight mass at St Mary’s church in Batticaloa in 2005.
On Monday, the senior state counsel appearing for the Attorney General informed the court that there is no need to file evidence in the case and proceed further. Chandrakanthan was a former child soldier in the Tamil Tiger rebel group that fought a three-decade civil war to create an independent state for Sri Lanka’s ethnic Tamil minority in the island’s north and east. He was recruited by the Tamil Tigers as a child soldier in 1990 at the age of 16. (PTI)

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