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Top LTTE agent arrested in US

world Updated: Apr 26, 2007 13:45 IST

The United States has arrested Karunakaran Kandasamy alias Karuna, a Tamil of Sri Lankan origin, on the charge of being the kingpin of a major racket to provide financial and material support to the LTTE, a banned organisation in the States.

A US embassy release said on Thursday that Kandasamy, arrested in Queens New York, was drawing on "America's financial resources and technical advances to further the war of terror in Sri Lanka and elsewhere."

"We refuse to allow this to continue," the US Attorney, Roslyn R Mauskopf, told the District Court in Brooklyn on Wednesday.

The LTTE was treating the US as a major source for money, arms and military technology, the embassy release said.

As Director of the American branch of the LTTE, and who was operating through a front organisation called World Tamil Coordinating Committee (WTCC), Kandasamy had helped launder money, smuggle arms, explosives,equipment and technology into the LTTE-held parts of Sri Lanka.

To make this possible, the LTTE had established branches in 12 countries.

Kandasamy had helped engineering, technical, medical and weaponry experts to go to the LTTE-held areas for meetings with militant officials.

He had also helped research military technology.

If found guilty, Kadasamy could get a 15 year sentence.

Previously, 11 persons were indicted in the Eastern District of New York for aiding the LTTE. In one case (US vs S.Sarachandran) in Queens. New York, five persons were indicted for trying to buy several dozen SAM missiles by bribing FBI agents.

In another case (US vs T Pratheepan) there is a charge of trying to bribe State Department officials to get the LTTE removed from the list of banned organisations.

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