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Lankan doctor who killed husband to be freed in Australia

A Sri Lankan-born doctor who was convicted of the manslaughter of her abusive husband last year has been granted parole and will be released from prison this week, said a report published by The West Australian yesterday.

The WA report said: Chamari Liyanage was jailed for four years in February last year over the fatal bashing of her "manipulative and merciless" husband Dinendra Athukorala in Geraldton in 2014.

She has been eligible for parole since June but was facing deportation upon release after her permanent residency visa was automatically cancelled on character grounds.

Liyanage’s visa was reinstated after her friends in the Geraldton community campaigned to convince the Immigration Department to review the mandatory cancellation.

Her parole was approved by the Prisoners Review Board this afternoon and she is set to be released from Greenough Regional Prison on Wednesday.

Liyanage’s lawyer George Giudice said she was elated with the result and could not wait to be released into the Geraldton community.

"I am looking forward to seeing her walk through the front door of my office on Wednesday," he said.

"She has been a model prisoner and has been helping other women in jail.

"She is very well regarded out there in Greenough prison. She has been pursuing her art and has been a great confidant to other women."

During Liyanage’s murder trial, the jury was told Dr Athukorala engaged in unusual sexual practices, forced his wife to take part in threesomes and controlled her movements and finances.

After years of physical, sexual and emotional abuse, Liyanage bashed her husband over the head with a 1.79kg mallet as he lay in bed at their Geraldton home.

Liyanage has been studying and writing a book in prison in the hope of using her experience to help other victims of domestic violence.

Mr Giudice said she wanted to raise awareness about women who were stuck in situations where they were controlled.

Liyanage was acquitted of murder after a three-week trial but was found guilty of the lesser charge of manslaughter.

She is waiting on the result of an appeal against her manslaughter conviction.
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