Trincomalee student killings Karuna’s UK criminal conviction for fake diplomatic passport

The CID is actively investigating several violent crimes and other serious offences that were not pursued by the police under the former regime, the Nation reliably learns. While public attention has been focused on the investigations into attacks on media personnel following the surprise arrests of five army spies last month for the abduction and torture of former Nation Deputy Editor Keith Noyahr, court records reveal that the investigations include a probe into the use of a false passport by former LTTE deputy leader Karuna Amman to travel to the United Kingdom in 2007.

The CID informed court last month that Karuna travelled to the UK using a false diplomatic passport, and that officials were complicit in issuing the passport, fraudulently acquiring a UK visa and escorting Karuna onto a departure aircraft by-passing immigration procedures.

Detectives have also acquired records from the United Kingdom including court transcripts from Karuna’s criminal conviction in that country for possessing a false identity document with intent, including a confession by the former militant that is now the basis for an extensive investigation into those who authorized his foreign travel.

Investigations are also progressing into the abduction, ransoming and murder of 11 students in 2008 and 2009 by navy officers and sailors. The CID has already arrested several navy officers after tracing the mobile telephones used to make ransom demand calls to family members of the abducted students.

The calls connected the navy men to a naval unit that detectives allege abducted the students and held them at a secret prison facility in Trincomalee.

Also subject to a CID probe are the bank accounts of former Sri Lankan ambassador to Moscow Udayanga Weeratunga following a revelation from the Central Bank’s Financial Intelligence Unit that he (Weeratunga) had amassed substantial wealth in Sri Lanka between 2006 and 2015 during his tenure in the foreign service with links to several suspicious bank accounts and shell companies located in tax havens.

Weeratunga is currently absconding from court having been noticed to appear before the FCID for a separate investigation into the alleged fraudulent purchase of MIG aircraft by the Air Force in 2006 shortly before he became ambassador.

Several separate investigations are also on-going connected to the 2009 murder of Sunday Leader editor Lasantha Wickrematunge. Apart from the main murder inquiry, detectives are also probing the connected abduction and execution of two Tamil youth from Vavuniya a few days after Wickrematunge was killed as their motorcycle was said to be planted as evidence in that case.

A separate investigation is being conducted into the suspicious death of a retired army intelligence officer in Kegalle who was found hanging from his ceiling last October with a purported suicide note claiming responsibility for the murder of Wickrematunge.

Detectives later discovered that the officer was in Pinnawela with his family at the time the editor was killed.

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