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Sri Lanka maid death in police custody, mystery deepens

ECONOMYNEXT – Detectives probing a death of a maid in Sri Lanka police custody got a court order to get CCTV footage with questions raised on where the unrecorded arrest was made, as lawyers for the widower expressed cover up fears.

The case of Rajakumari, a 42-year-old housemaid who died mysteriously after being arrested by the Welikada police on May 12, was brought before court again on June 2, 2023.

Detectives from the police Special Investigation Unit is probing the death, sought order to get CCTV footage from the house where maid had worked, because they faced resistence in getting evidence.

The court gave permission to obtain the CCTV footage and also reports from the Colombo National Hospital, where Rajakumari was pronounced dead on arrival.

“We have obtained a preliminary medical report that clearly states there were signs of being beaten,” Attorney-at-Law Senaka Perera, a pro-bono lawyer appearing for the husband of the deceased maid told reporters.

“The investigative team being disrupted when obtaining the CCTV footage means that someone is trying to cover it up.”

Police had not recorded the arrest as was required, before she was apparently taken into custody and beaten.

“The police now say she was arrested on the street and not at anyone’s house, which contradicts the earlier statement,” Perera said.

The case will is due to be heard again on June 20, 2023. Lawyers asked court to oversee the investigations to maintain transparency. (Colombo/June02/2023)

Saturday June 3, 2023  EN

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