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Present: Pereira J.
PEBIS t>. GUNESEKEBA.672—P. C. Colombo, 47,815.
Tout—Intermeddlingvoith suitors—1 Suitor"dofitie#—Lawfulexcuse—
Burden of proof.
The word ** suitor" as used in section 5 of Ordinance No. IX of1894 (an Ordinance to suppress intermeddling with suitorsin
Courts of justice) means a party to a suit in Court who for the timebeing has business in Court.
The burden of proving that a party accused had '* lawful excuse *’for accosting a suitor is on the party accused.
^IHE facts appear from the judgment.
Ti88evera$inghc, for accused, appellant.—The accused did not“ accost a suitor " within the meaning of the Ordinance. Evenaccording to the case for the prosecution, the accused is said to haveasked Kutti to settle the case, and told him that Tami " wouldplace rowdies ou the road." It is not every conversation between asuitor and another that amouuts to accosting. There was nothingimproper in asking accused to settle the case, or in telling him thatTami would act in u particular way. Counsel cited Narananaswamyv. Diogtitl Keegel v. Asana Marakar et cl.,5 Mesu v. Karan amine.*
Counsel argued on the facts.
Car. uJv. cult.
September 24. 19J 4. Pereira J.—r
The accused has been convicted, under section 5 of OrdinanceNo. 11 of 1894, of having, without lawful excuse, accosted a suitor.The term " suitor ” has not been defined by the Ordinance, but it ismanifest from the words that, in the section, follow this expression,namely, “ or other person having business in Court,*' that theLegislature intended that a suitor was himself a person havingbusiness in Court. Of course, one of the ordinary meanings of the.term “ suitor ” is a party to a suit in a Court of justice, and thesuitor contemplated in the section is such a party, who for the timebeing has business in Court. On September 3, 1914, the witnessKutti was a suitor having business in the Police Court of Colombo,
1 8 N. L. B. HI.s (19X2) 16 N. /.. R. 69.
3 (1906) 9 N. L. H. 146.
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as he had prosecuted one Taxni for some offence, and he was in theCourt in connection with the prosecution. He was in the witnessshed when the accused went up to him and asked him to settle thecase. Kutti refused, and then the accused, with the object obviouslyof frightening Kutti, told him that if he did not settle the case Tamiwould “ place rowdies on the road.” Clearly, the conduct of theaccused was tantamount to *' accosting ” Kutti, and in view ofsection 106 of the Evidence Ordinance the burden -of proving that,he had lawful excuse for his conduct was on the accused. Hepleaded no excuse of what he had done, but denied that he had actedas stated above. He stated that Tami was his nephew, and that allhe did was to ask Kutti whether Tami had left the Court. Thisstatement is not believed by the Magistrate, and 1 have little doubtthat it is false.
I affirm the conviction and sentence.
PERIS v. GUNESEKERA