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OIC’s Lorry transporting lethal cargo seized

*Five suspects arrested
Police have put an end to a series of journeys by the LTTE transporting suicide cadres, explosives and suicide kits to Colombo and certain other areas, using a lorry purchased from a police officer.

Trincomalee police seized the lorry and arrested five suspects.

According to police the lorry was hidden in the garage of the official quarters of the Inspector.

Though two police teams had been deployed to trace the lethal items transported in the lorry or the whereabouts of the Tiger cadres who were transported in this lorry to various locations, they had drawn a blank.

Inspite of the fact that the lorry transporting the lethal cargo, may have been stopped at check points and road blocks the LTTE cadres travelling in it succeeded in hoodwinking the personnel who were guarding such points and got away, claiming that the lorry belonged to the Police officer the sources said.According to investigations conducted so far, the OIC who sold the lorry to another party was not aware of the fact that the vehicle was used for terrorist activities.

The officer had registered the lorry in his wife’s name and obtained a lease.

Since he was finding it difficult to pay the lease installment, the officer had given the vehicle to one of his friends named Karan, obtained Rs 200,000 and told him to pay the arrears of the lease installment, police said.

"Karan was a LTTE member and he in turn had given the lorry to a Tiger cadre named Akilan.

The LTTE had made use of the lorry to transport its cadres, suicide kits and explosives to Colombo and a number of other areas and their modus operandi was to mention to the guards at respective check points and road blocks that the vehicle belonged to the said police officer and pretend that they were transporting various commercial commodities.

The LTTE had transported five suicide kits and five suicide cadres to Colombo and two suicide kits to suburbs of Trincomalee adopting this ruse.

The LTTE had hidden the explosives and the suicide kits in secret compartments made in the doors of the lorry and subsequent investigations revealed that the two suicide kits transported to areas close to Trincomalee and buried there, had been later moved to another location to avoid detection.

When the Tigers learnt that police had come to know about their clandestine operation they had returned the lorry to the police officer to whose wife it belonged.

Police sources said that the police officer concerned, who is on leave now, will be taken into custody for interrogation.

On a tip off received by the Government Intelligence Services a team of police officers under the supervision of Trincomalee SSP Vaas Gunawardane, took into custody the lorry and arrested the suspects.

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