Basil Rajapaksa and Dr. Jayatilake arrested over alleged fraud

By Madura Ranwala

The Financial Crimes Investigation Division (FCID) yesterday evening arrested former Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa over alleged misappropriation of Divineguma funds.

The police took him into custody after having recorded his statement at FCID, Kollupitiya. The former minister returned to the country on Tuesday afternoon from the US after FCID sought a statement from him. Rajapaksa reported to FCID yesterday morning.

Parliamentarian Basil Rajapaksa pays his respects to Highways Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle in ColomboThe police also arrested former Economic Development Ministry Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayatilaka and former Director General of the Divineguma Department, R.R.K. Ranawaka.

After having recorded statements from suspects, the police produced them before Kaduwela Magistrate Dhammika Hemapala last night. The Magistrate ordered them remanded till April . Earlier the Kaduwela Magistrate ordered the former Minister arrested immediately after his return from the US.

The police also questioned former chairman of Telecommunication Regulatory Commission cum former Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga over financial frauds alleged to have taken place during his tenure, Police Spokesman ASP Ruwan Gunasekara told The Island yesterday.

Asked over how many alleged financial frauds the FCID was probing them, he said that Parliamentarian Basil Rajapaksa was questioned over four cases and Weeratunga on one case.

MP Rajapaksa, who left the country just after the Presidential Election on January 08, 2015 returned to the country on Tuesday, to support the investigations over allegations against him.

After returning to the country he was welcomed warmly by his supporters at the BIA and he told media that he had not robbed public money and all decisions that were taken during his tenure as Economic Development minister was for the betterment of the country.