Customs officers Rs. 125mn bribery case Court orders to inspect computer data before June 22

Published : 8:10 am  June 8, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 

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By T. Farook Thajudeen   

Colombo High Court Judge Shasi Mahendran yesterday directed the counsel for the four senior Customs officials who were accused of taking the highest amount of bribe of Rs.125 million from a businessman to examine the computer data relating to the incident before June 22.   


The Judge made this direction on considering the submission made by the counsel for the third suspect.   


However DSG Ayesha Jinasena appearing for the prosecution submitted that on an earlier occasion too the counsel had made a request to inspect the computers but had not turned up when a date was fixed to inspect them.   
The Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC) has filed fourteen indictments against the four officials, who are accused of demanding and receiving the bribe from a vehicle spare parts businessman.   
The accused Assistant Superintendent of Customs M. D. Upali Gunaratne of Kadawatha, Superintendents of Customs H. W. Wimalaweera of Gampaha, U. S. Wickramasinghe of Athurugiriya and S.P. Jinadasa of Rajagiriya were accused of have accepted the bribe.   

 

The CIABOC has filed fourteen indictments against the four officials, who are accused of demanding and receiving the bribe from a vehicle spare parts businessman


They were apprehended by detectives of the Bribery Commission who acted on a complaint lodged by the businessman G. Bandulasena.   


The accused, were alleged to have visited the complainants house with Deputy Superintendent of Customs Jagath Gunathilake and had claimed that the complainant needed to pay Rs.300 million for a stock of vehicle spare parts that the Customs had earlier released to the complainant following proper procedure.   


Later they had demanded a bribe of Rs.150 million from the complainant during June 26 and September 29 in 2015.   


Subsequently, the complainant lodged a complaint with the Bribery Commission. The Commission had then deployed a decoy to negotiate the bribe with the accused. Accordingly the bribe was given to the accused at the business premises belonging to the complainant located in Panchikawatta, Maradana.   


Later the Deputy Superintendent of Customs Gunathilake had arrived at the location with the first and fourth accused and were arrested by Bribery Commission sleuths as they were receiving the bribe. The other two accused, who were allegedly waiting on the roadside, were arrested later. The prosecution brought forward 39 witnesses for its case.     

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