The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has dispatched 06 police teams to arrest MP Rishad Bathiudeen, the Police Spokesperson said.
Earlier today (13), the Colombo Fort Magistrate ruled that the Police can proceed to arrest MP Bathiudeen and the two other suspects who are accused of misappropriating public funds during last year’s presidential election, without a warrant.
Thereby, Attorney General Dappula de Livera directed the Police to arrest MP Bathiudeen, Project Director at the Ministry of Resettlement Mohamed Yaseen Samsudeen and the Accountant of the Project Alagarathnam Manoranjan according to the law.
The Criminal Investigation Department (CID), upon the direction of the Attorney General, had sought the Colombo Fort Magistrate to issue a warrant to arrest the three suspects on charges of criminal misappropriation of public funds and violation of election laws.
The magistrate turned down the CID’s request for a warrant to take the suspects into custody, however, ruled that the arrests can be executed without a warrant.
The suspects had allegedly misused 222 buses belonging to the state-owned Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) for transporting internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Puttalam to polling stations in Silavathurai during the 2019 Presidential Election.
AG’s Coordinating Officer State Counsel Nishara Jayaratne had stated that there is sufficient evidence to claim that the suspects have violated Article 82(1) of Presidential Elections Act, No. 15 of 1981 and misappropriated public funds to the tune of Rs. 9.5 million.