Former Parliamentarian Harin Fernando has pointed out that false allegations can amount to three years imprisonment under the Prevention of Offences Relating to the Sports Act.
“Any person who makes any false allegation in any information disclosed by such person under section 16 of this Act knowing the content of such allegation to be false or having reasons to believe that such allegation is not true, commits an offence under this Act and shall, on conviction by a Magistrate, be liable to a fine not exceeding rupees one hundred thousand or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding three years or to both fine and imprisonment.” Fernando said, sharing an image of Section 13 of the Prevention of Offences Relating to Sports Act on Facebook.
Fernando posted the content, questioning if former Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage was aware that he could be imprisoned for making a false allegation on the 2011 Cricket World cup final between Sri Lanka and India.
In June, Aluthgamage had revealed that the 2011 World Cup was fixed.
Sri Lanka Cricketers Aravinda de Silva, Upul Tharanga and Kumar Sangakkara were questioned by the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) in this regard.
However, the SIU today decided to suspend the investigation, claiming that there was no sufficient evidence to prove the 14- allegations raised by Aluthgamage.
All cricketers involved in the inquiry were also cleared by the Unit stating that the statements recorded thus far were genuine and free of charges.
Lawyer Nishan Premathiratne on the Sports Act 👇
“Though the alleged offence of match fixing which was to have been allegedly committed in 2011, could not have been inquired into under the Prevention of Offences Relating to Sports Act which was Only inacted in 2019 , section 13 of the act has however has provided that any false allegation with knowledge of falsehood, being levelled after the inactement of the law, could tantamount to an offense where upoun conviction, could be punishable with a maximum of 3 years in imprisonments and also be subject to a fine.
This provision in the Act is a very powerful deterrent against any 3rd party, making unsubstantiated frivolous allegations in respect of any alleged corruption in sport which could be in respect of any game/ match which was held prior to the enactment of the Anticorruption law. If any such allegation is leveled after the act was inacted, section 13 of the act could encompass criminal sanctions.
In addition any person who has been falsely accused even through inuendo could concurrently institute defamatory proceedings in a district court seeking for significant sums of damages for the loss caused to their reputation, concurrently, along with the criminal provisions set out in the Act.” he said.