Basil’s name used by senior cop in shady deal


By Shamindra Ferdinnado


The police recently arrested a senior police official for allegedly accepting Rs 7.5 million from a person promising to help him to acquire a large stock empty artillery shells belonging to the Sri Lanka Army.

Government sources told The Sunday Island that the arrested official had posed as a confidante of Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa and negotiated a lucrative deal. The police swooped down on the suspect at five star Colombo hotel on Thursday and took him to custody.

An official said that Minister Rajapaksa had been aware of the police operation and expected the law enforcement authorities to conduct a full investigation into the scam. The suspect is believed to be attached to a VIP security contingent based in Colombo.

Minister Rajapaksa confirmed the incident.

However senior police officials said that a senior policeman had not been arrested, though they were investigating an attempt to work out an illegal transaction. Police headquarters downplayed the incident.

Sources said that Minister Rajapaksa wanted to know whether the police suspect had been involved in any previous illegal transactions. "We also like to know his associates," sources said adding that the Rajapaksa brothers have been accused to collecting millions of rupees through middlemen.

Sources said that the police ring could be responsible for many other transactions over the years. Responding to a query by The Sunday Island, the police said that several dozens of persons had been arrested by a special unit for allegedly extorting money on behalf of the Rajapaksas.

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