Minister Prasanna Ranatunga has been sentenced to two years of rigorous imprisonment suspended for a period of five years by the Colombo High Court in the case filed against him over the Meethotamulla land dispute.
Meanwhile, the minister has also imposed a fine of Rs. 25 million by the Colombo High Court, which also ordered that failure to pay the fine carries an additional nine months of imprisonment.
In addition, the court further ordered Minister Ranatunga to pay a compensation of Rs. 1 million to the accuser, a businessman and declared that if he fails to pay the compensation, he will be sentenced to an additional three months imprisonment.
Meanwhile, two other accused in the case including the minister’s wife Morin Ranatunga and another individual were acquitted from the case by the court.
The Attorney General had filed an indictment against the former Western Province Chief Minister before the Colombo High Court in May 2016, accusing him of threatening a businessman in connection with the transactions of land in Meethotamulla of 322 perches.
Ranatunga, who is the incumbent Minister of Urban Development and Housing, was accused of threatening a businessman named Gerard Mendis and demanding Rs. 64 million to evict unauthorized occupants of land in the Meethotamulla area in Kolonnawa and to refill the land, during his tenure as Chief Minister.
The verdict in the case was delivered by Colombo High Court Judge Manjula Tillakaratne, today (06).