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Sri Lanka: Treatment of persons convicted of drug trafficking in Sri Lanka and/or abroad; penalties for drug trafficking and drug offences in general (1998-1999)

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada
Publication Date 1 June 1999
Citation / Document Symbol LKA31926.E
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Sri Lanka: Treatment of persons convicted of drug trafficking in Sri Lanka and/or abroad; penalties for drug trafficking and drug offences in general (1998-1999), 1 June 1999, LKA31926.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6ac170.html [accessed 25 October 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

 

Detailed information concerning the treatment of persons convicted of drug trafficking in Sri Lanka and/or abroad and the penalties for drug trafficking and drug offences in general could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

There have been media reports regarding drug use and trafficking in Sri Lanka. In June 1998, Xinhua reported that:

Over 23,000 drug smugglers were convicted in Sri Lanka last year while police arrested about 20,000 people for drug offenses and seized a lot of heroin.  There are at least 100,000 drug addicts in the country and the number keeps on increasing, the sources said.  The Sri Lankan government spends over 46 million U.S. dollars every year to upkeep 10,000 of these addicts. Drug addicted prisoners help the scourge to spread.  However, the sources added steps have been taken to set up separate prisons for drug addicts and for more rehabilitation centers in the country (26 June 1998).

In December 1998, in a Xinhua report on the arrest of a Singaporean for smuggling heroin into Sri Lanka, it was stated that "Sri Lanka recently increased mandatory penalties against drug smugglers with those serious offenders facing life imprisonment sentences" (14 Dec. 1998). According to IPS, in March 1999 the President's Office released a statement to the effect that "the government would very soon be bringing back the death penalty - usually carried out by hanging - for murder and drug trafficking in view of the soaring crime wave" (15 Mar. 1999).

No further information regarding the treatment of persons convicted of drug trafficking in Sri Lanka and/or abroad nor on the penalties for drug trafficking and drug offences in general could be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Response.

References

Inter Press Service (IPS). 15 March 1999. "Rights-Sri Lanka: Death Penalty Returns on Public Demand." (NEXIS)

Xinhua. 14 December 1998. "Sri Lanka Customs Seizes 4 Kilograms of Heroin." (NEXIS)

_____. 26 June 1998. "Sri Lanka, International Point for Drug Trafficking." (NEXIS)

Additional Sources Consulted

United States Department of State. February 1999. International Narcotics Control Strategy Report.

     Unsuccessful attempts to contact the United Nations Drug Control Program, Regional Office for South Asia, Delhi.

Unsuccessful attempts to contact the Alcohol and Drug Information Centre, Colombo.

The Sri Lanka Anti Narcotics Association was unable to provide information within the deadline for this Response.

The High Commission for the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka was unable to provide information within the deadline for this Response.

Electronic sources: IRB Databases; On-line legal databases; CISNET; NEXIS; WNC.

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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