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World Convicted murderer sworn in as Sri Lankan MP

15:36  08 september  2020
15:36  08 september  2020 Source:   msn.com

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Convicted MP gestures after sworn in as a member of parliament [Ishara S Kodikara/AFP. A Sri Lankan politician sentenced to death for murder has been escorted out of prison and became the first convict to be sworn in Jayasekara is the first convicted murderer to serve as an MP in Sri Lanka.

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A Sri Lankan politician sentenced to death for murder was escorted out of prison on Tuesday to become the first convict to be sworn in as a member of parliament, to heckles from opposition MPs.

a man sitting at a desk: Premalal Jayasekara, a convicted murderer, was heckled as he took oath as an MP in Sri Lanka's parliament © ISHARA S. KODIKARA Premalal Jayasekara, a convicted murderer, was heckled as he took oath as an MP in Sri Lanka's parliament

Premalal Jayasekara from the ruling Sri Lanka Podujana Party (SLPP) was convicted in August of murdering an opposition activist after opening fire at an election rally in 2015.

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A New York man who served almost 18 years in prison for the wrongful conviction of killing of his parents, is now sworn in as an attorney in the same appellate court where his wrongful conviction was overturned.

But the 45-year-old's conviction and sentence came after nominations for the August 5 poll, meaning he could still contest the election and take up his seat.

Jayasekara was a no-show when the current parliament held its first session on August 20 as prison authorities refused to let him out.

However, he petitioned the Court of Appeal which on Monday held that he should be escorted from prison to exercise his rights as an MP.

Opposition lawmakers wearing black shawls in protest heckled Jayasekara as he took the oath and several staged a walkout.

He is to be escorted back to prison after the day's session.

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On 21 April 2019, Easter Sunday, three churches in Sri Lanka and three luxury hotels in the commercial capital, Colombo, were targeted in a series of coordinated Islamic terrorist suicide bombings.

A federal jury convicted a New Jersey woman Thursday of forcing a Sri Lankan national to work for her for nine years without pay and even marry her so she could stay in the country.

Jayasekara became the first convicted murderer to serve as an MP in Sri Lanka. He has been an MP since 2001.

In January 2015, he opened fire at a stage being set up for an election event by a rival party, killing one person. He has appealed the conviction and the death sentence.

Although Sri Lanka hands down death sentences, no one has been executed since 1976.

Jayasekara is not the only legislator to be escorted from prison to parliament in Sri Lanka.

Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, a first-time MP, is awaiting trial for alleged murder and is brought in for legislative sessions.

Brushes with the law are no bar to a career in politics in South Asia.

More than 40 percent of lawmakers in India's parliament face criminal charges -- some as serious as murder and rape –- according to the Association of Democratic Reforms, an electoral reform group.

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