Foreign Killing

August 19, 2011 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s High Court Friday handed five Chinese nationals the death penalty for murdering a compatriot at a restaurant near the capital over eight years ago, a court official said. A Chinese woman and two Chinese men were in court Friday to hear the sentence while judges issued a warrant for the other two who have absconded, the official said.

The five, whose names were not immediately released, were charged with killing a fellow Chinese restaurant employee in January 2003 and dismembering his body and disposing it in two plastic bags.

Among those convicted was the Chinese woman who owned the restaurant in the Colombo suburb of Dehiwala.

Sri Lankan courts pass the death sentence for serious crime, but the death penalty is usually commuted a life in prison. The Chinese nationals have the right to appeal to a higher court.