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Arrest warrant for Fonseka's son-in-law issued

A Colombo court on Monday issued an arrest warrant for the son-in-law of former army chief Sarath Fonseka, himself is in military custody for a week now, for his alleged involvement in arms’ deal transacted during his father-in-law’s tenure as army chief, reports Sutirtho Patranobis.

world Updated: Feb 16, 2010 00:55 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis

A Colombo court on Monday issued an arrest warrant for the son-in-law of former army chief Sarath Fonseka, himself is in military custody for a week now, for his alleged involvement in arms’ deal transacted during his father-in-law’s tenure as army chief.

According to reports, the arrest warrant for Danuna Tillekaratne, also the chief of Hicorp transaction, a US-based firm was issued by the Colombo Fort Magistrate. Danuana, who is in Colombo, could soon be arrested.

The arrest warrant was issued even as protests continued against Fonseka’s arrest. Several protest meetings and religious prayers were held over the weekend to urge the government to release Fonseka.

Speaking to the media on Monday, police spokesperson, Superintendent of Police Prishantha Jayakody said the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) with a warrant issued by the Fort Magistrate searched four security vaults in a private bank in Colombo area on Monday.

``The vaults belonged to Asoka Tillekaratne, Danuna’s mother.The vaults contained 527,000 US Dollars, 100 sterling pounds and 15 million Sri Lankan rupees,’’ the Media Centre for National Security (MCNS) said.

The safety lockers belonging to Tillekaratne’s mother were then sealed. The Sri Lanka Central Bank’s finance intelligence unit and the exchange controller were informed this discovery.

Jayakody said investigations would continue to as to how this large sum of foreign currency came to the country and for what purpose the money was to be used for.

``Tillekaratne, the General’s son-in-law, has been accused of indulging in arms deals through a company allegedly belonging to him in Oklahoma in the USA. He has been listed as the President and Registered Agent for the company Hicorp International Inc. which is said to have supplied arms, ammunition and several other items to the Sri Lanka Army while General Fonseka was its commander,’’ the Ada Derana website reported.

Meanwhile, two students were killed and eight more injured after an unclaimed grenade exploded in the northern town of Jaffna, some 350 km north of Colombo.

Police said the grenade was picked up by school boy who then threw it, triggering an explosion.