July 1 and 8.
( .158 )
PERERA v. GEERlS et al.
P. C., Colombo, 5,733.
The Oaths Ordinance, 1895, s. 12—Witness giving false evidence, how tobe dealt with—Proceeding under the Ordinance by successor ofMagistrate before whom false evidence had been given.
When a Magistrate is of opinion that a witness has given falseevidence in a serious case, proceedings should be instituted againstthe witness for perjury ; but when the false evidence is given in atrivial case, and is of comparatively little consequence, then theprovisions of Ordinance No. 9 of 1895 may be availed of. Thewitness must here be informed of the charge against him, and givenan opportunity to explain what seems to the Magistrate to befalse.
When a witness gives false evidence before a Magistrate, Ijissuccessor in office cannot proceed against such witness under section12 of “ The Oaths Ordinance, 1895.”
TN this case the accused was charged with the theft of a bull.
Two witnesses, Miguel and Jeelis, who were called for theprosecution, said that they saw the accused removing the bull.At the close of the case the Magistrate acquitted the accused, andproceeded to record thus : “ Jeelis and Miguel have, in my opinion,“ given false evidence. I fine them each Rs. 20, and in default one“ month’s rigorous imprisonment.” He then went on to give hisreasons for his opinion as to the two witnesses. On appeal by Jeelisand Miguel on the finding against them,
Dornhorst, for appellants.
Cur. adv. wit.
8th July-, 1896. Lawrie, J.—
. When a Magistrate is of opinion that a witness has given falseevidence in a serious case, it is certainly my opinion that proceedingsshould be instituted against the witness for perjury, but when thefalse evidence is given in a trivial case and is of comparatively littleconsequence, then the provisions of the' Ordinance No. 9 of 1895may be availed of, but the witness must be informed of the chargeagainst him, and he must have an opportunity given to him toexplain what seems to the Magistrate to be false. I am obliged toset aside the conviction and fine. I would remit to the PoliceMagistrate to send for the witness and to explain the charge; butthe Magistrate is no longer in that Court, and his successor cannotpunish under the Ordinance No. 9 of 1895 for false evidence givenbefore another Magistrate.
PERERA v. GEERIS et al