The Attorney General has orchestrated the integration of facial recognition technology into the national justice system for the first time, specifically for the Trial-at-Bar concerning the murders of Polonnaruwa District parliamentarian Amarakeerthi Athukorala and his bodyguard.
This innovative technology is set to play a crucial role in positively identifying the individuals accused in the case before the three-judge High Court Trial-at-Bar. The tragic incident occurred on May 9 last year in Nittambuwa during the peak of the ‘Aragalaya.’
During the commencement of the trial at the Gampaha High Court on Friday, Deputy Solicitor General Janaka Prasanna Bandara apprised the court of the Attorney General’s Department’s plan to introduce this cutting-edge technology. The primary objective is to analyze CCTV footage of the incident, comparing the faces captured with those of the accused. This process aims to conclusively establish the involvement of the accused in the crime. The overarching goal is to positively identify and bring to justice those responsible for the heinous act.
A total of forty-one accused have been indicted on 14 counts. Notably, two of the accused have passed away, and two others are undergoing trial in absentia. One accused is currently abroad, while the other is yet to be apprehended. Despite their absence, legal representation has been secured for both individuals. The trial is underway before a distinguished three-judge bench, featuring High Court Judges Sahan Mapa Bandara (President), Rashmi Singappuli, and Ruwan Pathirana.
All accused individuals entered pleas of not guilty after the indictments were formally presented to them on Friday.