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Present: Akbar J.
INSPECTOB OF POLICE v. DE ZOYSA.
24S—P. C. Ralapitiya, 12,131.
Jurisdiction—Accused charged with two offences at one trial—Punishment—
' Power of Police Magistrate—Penal Code, s. 67.
Where an accused person was charged in the Police Courtwith two offences at one trial, viz., with voluntarily causing hurtto the complainant under section 314 of the Penal Code and withassaulting the complainant with intent to dishonour him undersection 346 of the Penal Code,—
Held, that the Police Magistrate had no power to inflict a more. severe sentence than that which the Court could inflict for one- ofthe offences.
PPEAL from a conviction by the Police Magistrate ofBalapitiya.
Rajapakse, for accused, appellant.
Ilangakoon, G.C.t for the Crown.
May 27, 1929. Akbar J.—
The accused in this case was charged on two counts, namely,with voluntarily causing hurt to Sub-Inspector Tillekeratne of theEosgoda Police Station by striking him with a chair, therebyi (1912) IS N. L. R. 257.* (*$!<*) 17 N. L. R. 29.
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Inspector ofPolice v.Do Zoyaa
committing an offence punishable under section 814 of the CeylonPenal Code, tend with assaulting Sub-Inspector Tillekeratne withintent to dishonour him without any grave and sudden provocation,an offence punishable under section 346 of the Ceylon Penal Code.
The circumstances are admitted by the accused, but Hie appealis made on the ground that the sentence of six months’ rigorousimprisonment on each count to run consecutively is too severe.It is true that an assault on an Inspector of Police by an accusedwhom he is going to charge in Court is a serious offence and deservesto be punished severely, but at the same time .these two chargesare so connected together that I think the first charge is includedin the second and that the two counts have been brought in merelyto get the double punishment which the Court can award undersection 17 of the Criminal Procedure Code. Under that section,when a person is convicted at one trial of any two or more distinctoffences; in the case of a Police Court the punishment cannot exceedtwice the amount of punishment which it is competent to inflict.So that it is under that section that the Police Magistrateapparently horrified at the enormity of the offence, committedwithin the precincts of the Police Court, has sentenced the accusedto a year’s rigorous imprisonment.
It was a foolish act of the accused, and he stated to the Courtthat he was provoked because he was assaulted by eight of them,meaning thereby, I suppose, that he was assaulted by the constablesat the Police Station. But whatever that may be, under section 67of the Penal .Code there is a distinct injunction that where anythingis an offence falling within two or more separate definitions of anylaw in force for the time being by which offences are defined orpunished, the offender is not; to be punished with a more severepunishment than the Court which tries him could award for anyone of such offences. Now, the Police Court could not awardmore than six months’ rigorous imprisonment for each. one ofthese counts. I, therefore, think that the punishment should bereduced from twelve months’ rigorous imprisonment to six months’rigorous imprisonment on each count to run concurrently.
In other respects I affirm the conviction.
INSPECTOR OF POLICE v. DE ZOYSA