JAYETILEKE J.—KancLasamy and de Kretser.
1943Present: Jayetileke J.
KANDASAMY, Appellant and DE KRETSER, Respondent.
515—M. C. Point Pedro, 2,166.
Criminal Procedure—Accused.tried on two charges—Verdict of acquittal On onecharge—Verdict deferred on 2nd charge—Criminal Procedure Code, s. 190
Where an accused person was tried on two charges and the Magistrateat the close of the case acquitted him. of one charge and deferred hisverdict on the other charge' as he had not reached a decision on thequestion of law raised regarding it,—
Held, that the procedure was regular and that it was in strict accord-ance with section 190 of the Criminal Procedure Code.
PPEAL from a conviction by the Magistrate of Point Pedro.
L. A. Rajapakse (with him H. W. Thambiah and S. N. Rajah), forappellant.
E. H. T. Qunasekera, G.C., for complainant, respondent.
Cur. adv. vult.
October 5, 1943. Jayetileke J.—
In this case the accused was charged under sections 344 and 314 of thePenal Code (Cap. 15).
On May 5, 1943, the Magistrate appears to have come to the conclusionat the close of the case that the accused was not guilty on the first charge,but he had not reached a decision in regard to the second charge inview of a question of law that was raised. He thereupon recorded“ forthwith ” a verdict of acquittal on the first charge in terms ofsection 190 of the Criminal Procedure Code (Cap. 16).
So far as the second charge was concerned he could not, on that occasion,record a verdict because he had not found the accused guilty or not guiltyand he deferred his verdict till May 8, 1943.
Mr. Rajapakse contends that under section 190 it was not open to theMagistrate to record his verdict on the two charges on two different dates.
The sole question then is whether the Magistrate should have deferredhis verdict on the first charge till he reached a conclusion regarding thesecond charge. Section 190 does not say that he should do so. Thatsection seems to contemplate the simple case of one charge, and must be
DE KRETSER J.—North-Western Blue Line and K, B. L. Perera 523
read, mutatis mutandis, in a case involving several charges. Each chargeis, in reality, a separate case and would be tried separately but for theprovisions as to the joinder of charges. Directly one charge is found notto be established the accused should, I think, be acquitted as early aspossible.
In Samsudeen v. Suthoris1 Dalton J. said :—“It seems to me that thecondition precedent to the recording of the verdict is the finding of theverdict.”
It would therefore have been open to the Magistrate to defer recordinghis verdict on the first charge till he had found on the second charge aswell. But it seems to me that the Magistrate has acted in strict compliancewith section 190 when he made the order above referred to.
I would dismiss the appeal.
KANDASAMY, Appellant and DE KRETSER, Respondent