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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Attempts to undermine investigation of Britisher’s murder

A group of persons identifying themselves as law abiding citizens of Tangalle, have complained to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) in writing that there are attempts by some elements with vested interests to undermine investigations into the killing of  a British national at a hotel in Tangalle  recently.

The letter has been copied to the Attorney General, the secretaries of political parties, the MPs of the Hambantota District and the British High Commissioner. The organisation says that the chairman of Tangalle Pradeshiya Sabha who is the main suspect in this case is under the patronage of a powerful politician.

The organisation says in the letter, that attempts are being made to tamper evidence with regard to this case. Soon after the incident, the hotel management made a statement to the police regarding the alleged involvement of this person in the case.

“It is learnt that the hotel management is under pressure to withdraw the statements made,” the organisation says.

Besides, the organisation says that the main suspect’s name was connected with numerous other crimes in the recent past. Among them is the gunning down of an elderly woman K.A. Kusumawathi when she was travelling in a bus along with others to participate in a UNP political rally in the run up to the 2010 Presidential Election. Also, he had allegedly been involved in the incidents of opening gunfire at a UNP rally in Walasmulla on March 4, 2011, and damaging the house of the vice chairman of the Tangalle Pradeshiya Sabha.

Meanwhile, Hambantota District UNP MP Dilip Wedaarachchi said in a statement that had the law and order machinery been implemented with regard to these previous crimes, the latest unfortunate incident in Tanagalle would not have happened. He urged the authorities concerned to act promptly to bring the perpetrator to book as soon as possible.

Also, he commended the statement made by Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa that an independent inquiry would be conducted into the matter.

Mr. Wedaarachchi charged that this Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman and others around him had terrorised the entire Tangalle area, and the recent act of killing a British national and causing grievous injuries to his Russian girlfriend would strike a severe blow to the tourism industry.

“Is this the way Sri Lanka is being made the wonder of Asia?” he asked. (Kelum Bandara)


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