Van­dal­is­ing Bud­dha stat­ues in Mawanella

Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - FRONT PAGE - Re­ports by Ni­man­thi Ranas­inghe, P Shan­tha Bandara and Sa­man Vi­jaya Bandara - Mawanella

Na­tional Thowheed Ja­maath (NTJ) leader Zahran Hashim had pro­vided Moulavi Rashid Mo­hamed Ibrahim, a sus­pect in the Easter Sun­day at­tacks, with Rs. 2 mil­lion to be used as bail money for the sus­pects ac­cused of van­dal­is­ing Bud­dha stat­ues in Mawanella and the sur­round­ing ar­eas, court was told.

This was re­vealed by the CID in the pres­ence of Mawanella Mag­is­trate Upul Ra­jakaruna yes­ter­day.

The CID also stated that the sus­pects had re­vealed that Mo­hamed Zahran had been in­stru­men­tal in car­ry­ing out the plan to van­dalise the Bud­dha stat­ues and had been heard in­struct­ing the per­pe­tra­tors say­ing,“you do the deed and then come to me.”

The 20 sus­pects in the case, who were de­tained un­der pro­vi­sions of the Pre­ven­tion of Ter­ror­ism Act (PTA) were pro­duced in court yes­ter­day (13). It was re­vealed here that two of NTJ leader Zahran Hashim’s men who were in­volved in the Easter Sun­day at­tacks, namely Mo­ham­mad Ibrahim Sa­heed Ab­dul Haq and Mo­ham­mad Sadiq Ab­dulla as well as their fa­ther Moulavi Rashid Mo­ham­mad Ibrahim had run a train­ing cen­tre lo­cated at the Lackto Es­tate in Wanathav­il­luwa where youth were taught ex­trem­ist ide­olo­gies, which was fre­quently vis­ited by the NTJ leader.

Thir­teen other sus­pects who are un­der re­mand cus­tody were also pro­duced in courts un­der the di­rec­tion of le­gal of­fi­cer of the Mawanella Po­lice, In­spec­tor Ranas­inghe. The court also ac­ceded to a re­quest by the CID to is­sue an or­der to the of­fi­cer com­mand­ing the STF camp in Ke­galle to destroy the ex­plo­sives and chem­i­cals taken into cus­tody in re­la­tion to the in­ci­dent.

The CID also re­quested court to or­der the hand­ing over of the sus­pects in­clud­ing the two broth­ers who were close as­so­ciates of Zahran and their fa­ther back to them for fur­ther ques­tion­ing.

State Coun­sel Asanka Mendis who rep­re­sented the At­tor­ney Gen­eral sub­mit­ted to courts that this mat­ter was a very com­plex one and there­fore in­ves­ti­ga­tions can­not be com­pleted in a hurry and re­quested for more time to com­plete the process.

The court, hav­ing con­sid­ered the sub­mis­sions, or­dered the sus­pects to be fur­ther re­manded un­til June 27 and those who are be­ing held un­der de­ten­tion or­ders to be handed over to the CID for ques­tion­ing.

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