CEYPETCO shooting: Police seek AG's advice to make further arrests
The Colombo Crimes Division has sought the Attorney Genera l 's Department's advice to make further arrests in the shooting incident at the CEYPETCO head office where one person was killed.
A senior Police official told the Sunday Times they had obtained further CCTV footage of the shooting incident that occurred when the former Petroleum Minister Arjuna Ranatunga visited the premises on October 28.
Mr. Ranatunga, addressing a news conference on Thursday, said, the incident occurred two weeks ago when he had entered the ministry premises to collect the keys of his official residence.
He reiterated that his security guard did not shoot deliberately but shot to defend him as the people who entered the premises forcibly tried to grab the weapon of the Ministerial Security Division ( MSD) officer.
“I would have been killed if that man got hold of the weapon," he said.
The minister also presented CCTV footage of the incident. According to that, the minister was seen sitting on a sofa on the first floor for about 30 minutes waiting for an additional secretary to get the keys from his ministry office.
The minister and his MSD officers then hear a commotion and walk towards the main entrance. At that moment, the footage shows municipal council member Kulathissa Geeganage entering the premises and walking towards the minster while shouting obscene words. He is then stopped by the security staff.
The footage then shows the minister seated once again and the MSD officers rushing towards him and escorting him into a room.
Afterwards, a mob armed with bats, bicycle chains, knuckle dusters, and steel rods is seen entering the room and starting to assault the security staff. During the commotion, the shooting takes place when a member of the mob tries to pull a weapon from the MSD officer who is repeatedly assaulted by the mob.
Two rounds are fired and the mob flees without seeking cover.
The minister claimed once again that he was unable to give orders to his security staff as he was in a separate room.
According to the minister, the mob was headed by Mr. Geeganage and an interdicted union member identified as Bandula Samankumara.
The minister said that although he had been given bail, the MSD officer who saved his life was still on remand.
He said that he would consult lawyers and take necessary action to secure the release of the MSD officer.
At Thursday's news conference, Mr. Ranatunga explains the timeline of the shooting incident. Pic by Ishanka Sunimal