By Sunanda Deshapriya.
Filing a fundamental rights application at the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka requesting an interim order restraining from arresting and/or otherwise detaining him, Shani Abeysekara has reveled hitherto unconfirmed and unknown facts about links and knowledge the State Intelligence Service and Directorate of Military Intelligence had with master mind of the Easter Sunday attack Saharan Hashim or his group. The facts reveled paint a picture of cover ups and indirect facilitation of Saharan Hashim’s extremists activities.
Sharni Abeysekara is former senior Superintendent of Police and the Director of the Criminal Investigation Department.
Sri Lanka Brief has continuously raised these issues but this revelation provides more accurate and detailed descriptions number of issues we have exposed in the past.
The petition has been flied on 17th day of February 2022 by Attorney-at-Law Mr.Manjula Balasooriya.
Experts from the FR petition [sub heading from the SLB]:
Cover up of the attack on Vavunathivu police post:
The Petitioner states that later, the investigations conducted after the Easter Sunday attacks it was revealed that the said Ajanthan and the ex LTTE member is not responsible for the murder of police officers and that the said Ajanthan and the ex LTTE member had been falsely framed for the murder of police officers by the intelligence services (DMI and SIS). The Petitioner further states that the DMI and SIS are suspected to have conspired to plant the motorcycle jacket in a school bag, to mislead CID investigations on the murder of two police officers in to prevent them from discovering the real assailants involved in the murder. The Petitioner further states that due to the confusions caused by the SIS and DMI, CID officers discovered only after the attacks of Easter Sunday, that the murder of the two officers was committed by the NTJ terror group led by M.C.M Saharan, which is more fully described in the following paragraphs.the Petitioner in respect of the allegations mentioned in the MC Kuliyapitiya B Report 1411/2022 and in the anonymous Petition marked as P-2 until the final determination of this Petition;
President Sirisena blocked a briefing on Saharan to NSC:
The Petitioner states that on 02.02.2019, SDIG CID Ravi Seneviratne, together with the Petitioner had met the then President Maithripala Sirisena and explained that the attacks on Buddhist statues in Mawanella and the illegally storing over 100kg of explosives in Lactowatta, Vanathavilluva are suspected to be done by the same group, and therefore this matter should be given serious The Petitioner further states that since the CID was not a member of the Security Council, SDIG CID Ravi Seneviratne, has requested the then President Maithripala Sirisena, to bring this matter to the attention of the Security Council with a view of getting assistance from the intelligence services and the military to support the CID to prevent any terrorist bombings or extremist activities. The Petitioner states that although then the President Maithripala Sirisena, has mentioned that he will give an opportunity to the then SDIG CID Ravi Seneviratne to present a briefing of the aforementioned matter at the Security Council, the said undertaking was not put into effect by the then President Maithripala Sirisena.
DMI not sharing knowledge of Jamil with CID:
On 21.04.2019 a NTJ operative named Abdul Lathif Jamil has intended to detonate his suicide backpack in Hotel Taj Samudra, however, after receiving a call he had left Taj Samudra, which was also proved from the CCTV.
The Petitioner further states that later it was revealed that Military Intelligence officers [within hours of the attacks] have firstly visited Jamil‟s mother‟s house in Wellampitiya to find the whereabouts of Jamil, and after that proceeded to the house of Jamil in Dematagoda before the blast in Tropical Inn occurred, without ever informing the CID who were engaged in the investigation of M.C.M. Saharan and NTJ at the time being. In the said circumstances, it can be reasonably inferred that despite repeated requests by the CID for assistance in locating M.C.M. Saharan, military officers attached to DMI had prior knowledge of Abdul Lathif Jamil‟s identity, his role in the NTJ and his whereabouts, but for reasons yet unknown they have decided not to share this information with the CID to help apprehend Saharan and dismantle the NTJ.
The intelligence officer who was in contact with Saharan:
The Petitioner states that after the Easter Sunday Attacks, the CID officers became aware through the American Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) about an Internet Protocol (IP) address belonging to an individual who had been in frequent communication with M.C.M. Saharan which was discovered by analyzing computers, mobile devices and internet accounts tied to Easter attackers. The Petitioner states that the CID began interrogating the said individual who refused to give any information about his connection to M.C.M. Saharan or to NTJ. The Petitioner further states that thereafter, the Ministry of Defense through the then DMI Director Brigadier Chula Kodithuwakku prevented the CID from detaining the said individual asserting that that the activities of the said individual were classified as national security reasons as his activities were part of a secret military intelligence operation.
Intelligence officer code named Sonic Sonic:
The Petitioner states that through the investigations conducted after the Easter Attacks the CID was able to find out about a person called „Podi Saharan‟ alias Matale Saharan who lived in Matale, who had connections with NTJ. The Petitioner further states that the said „Podi Saharan‟ was arrested by Police Officers attached to Matale Police station and later on the same day he was again arrested by the CID.
The Petitioner states that while the said „Podi Saharan‟ was being interrogated by the CID it was transpired that he had communicated with a person called „Sonic Sonic‟, thereafter the CID was able to locate the sim of the said „Sonic Sonic‟ through an IP The Petitioner states that upon said revelation the CID investigated the details pertaining to SIM cards and IP addresses used by the said „Sonic Sonic‟.
The Petitioner states that according to the investigations it was revealed that the SIM which was used by „Sonic Sonic‟ has been obtained under the name of a policewoman sergeant attached to Colombo City Traffic The Petitioner states that consequently, the CID interrogated the said women police sergeant and she revealed that she has given the said SIM card to one Sub Inspector Bandara who is attached to the SIS, whom she claimed to have an affair with.
The Petitioner states that the CID proceeded to interrogate said SI Bandara and at that time DIG SIS Sampath Liyanage contacted the Petitioner and informed him to not to proceed with the said interrogation as the involvement of SI Bandara with Podi Saharan is a part of covert operation which is directly connected to the national However, the Petitioner refused to follow the request of said DIG and managed to get a statement, but the said Sub Inspector Bandara took the same stand in his statement and refused to divulge any information with regard to his connection with the said „Podi Saharan‟.
The Petitioner states that the CID proceeded to interrogate said SI Bandara and at that time DIG SIS Sampath Liyanage contacted the Petitioner and informed him to not to proceed with the said interrogation as the involvement of SI Bandara with Podi Saharan is a part of covert operation which is directly connected to the national Security. However, the Petitioner refused to follow the request of said DIG and managed to get a statement, but the said Sub Inspector Bandara took the same stand in his statement and refused to divulge any information with regard to his connection with the said „Podi Saharan‟.
SIS director Nilantha Jayawardena’s report within few hours of the attack:
The Petitioner further states that he became aware that the then SDIG SIS Nilantha Jayawardena, has sent a report to the CID for the first time providing full details of the NTJ command structure and evidence of their involvement in the killings of the two Police Constables in Vavunathivu a few hours after the Easter Attacks. The Petitioner states that the CID has been searching for M.C.M. Saharan for the past four months with no support from the Intelligence Services and if this specific information related to the NTJ Command structure and the murder of the two constables in Vavunathivu were made available to CID or provided to the Security Council prior to the attacks by the then SDIG SIS Nilantha Jayawardena it may have been possible to prevent the attacks.
Read the FR petition as a PDF: Sharni A FR petition re imminent arrest