Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - NEWS - BY LAK­MAL SOORIYAGODA

A Colombo Court yes­ter­day al­lowed pop­u­lar Sri Lankan rac­ing driver Di­lan­tha Malaga­muwa to leave the coun­try but or­dered him to be present in court on Jan­uary 4, which is the next hear­ing date of a case against him.

The CID told Colombo Fort Mag­is­trate Ms. Lanka Ja­yaratne that Mr. Malaga­muwa had ob­tained Rs.15 mil­lion from a Sri Lankan busi­ness­man and thus com­mit­ted a crim­i­nal breach of trust by vi­o­lat­ing Sec­tion 389 of the Pe­nal Code.

Coun­sel Jee­van­tha Jay­atilleke and Thi­lanka Pol­gam­pola ap­pear­ing for Mr. Malaga­muwa said their client wished to travel to Malaysia as he was em­ployed as a con­sul­tant by a Malaysian mo­tor train­ing school and that he also or­gan­ised in­ter­na­tional mo­tor rac­ing events.

Hav­ing con­sid­ered the sub­mis­sions, the Mag­is­trate al­lowed Mr. Malaga­muwa to leave the coun­try un­til the next hear­ing on Jan­uary 4.

The CID al­leged that Mr. Malaga­muwa had in­tro­duced Sri Lankan busi­ness­man Gnanadeepam Si­va­jothi to a Ja­panese, Yoshiyuki Hayashi for an in­vest­ment project in Sri Lanka.

Mr. Hayashi had given a loan of US$600,000 to the busi­ness­man who had agreed to pay back US$840,000 within three months but the busi­ness­man had failed to do so and this had re­sulted in the Ja­panese busi­ness­man com­plain­ing to the CID.

The CID In­spec­tor Anura de Silva al­leged that Mr. Malaga­muwa who as­sisted in in­ter­pret­ing Mr. Hayashi’s first com- plaint had done so im­prop­erly and had also ac­quired Rs.15 mil­lion from Mr. Si­va­jothi which he had spent on mo­tor rac­ing games.

Mr. Malaga­muwa, in a pe­ti­tion filed in Court said the Tourism Min­istry had ap­pointed him as an am­bas­sador to as­sist and sup­port Sri Lanka’s tourism ef­forts.

He said former Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Keizo Obuchi had highly ap­pre­ci­ated him stat­ing he had worked his way up to be­come a qual­i­fied driver in Ja­pan’s most prom­i­nent speed car races.

Mr. Malaga­muwa said he had re­ceived ma­jor in­ter­na­tional hon­ours claim­ing the vic­tory of Nip­pon For­mula Cham­pi­onship in 2007 be­com­ing the first nonJa­panese Asian to com­pete in the game.

He said he had also won the Malaysian GT cham­pi­onship on sev­eral oc­ca­sions.

Di­lan­tha Malaga­muwa

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