Monday, June 11, 2012

Swiss to question ex-LTTE cadres in Sri Lanka over money laundering by..............

 Swiss to question ex-LTTE cadres in Sri Lanka over money laundering by Swiss Tamil Tigers
Mon, Jun 11, 2012, 12:18 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.
Jun 11, Colombo: Investigators from the Swiss Federal Prosecutor's office will arrive in Sri Lanka to interrogate imprisoned former members of the Tamil Tiger terrorist group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), a Swiss news report said Sunday.
The Swiss Federal Prosecutor's office is investigating the money laundering activities of 12 Swiss Tamils to finance the war in Sri Lanka.
The NZZ am Sonntag newspaper reported that Swiss prosecutors in Sri Lanka will question some 25 people from senior ranks of the LTTE some of whom are currently imprisoned.
The Swiss prosecutors will also visit The Netherlands to interview the head of finance of the LTTE who is imprisoned there.
According to a spokeswoman for the prosecutor's office the aim of the investigations, due to take place in autumn, was to strengthen the money laundering case against the 12 Swiss Tamils.
"It's to prove that the Swiss branch of the global LTTE knowingly and willingly misused money from illegally obtained loans to inject it into the international finance circuit of the organisation," NZZ am Sonntag quoting the spokeswoman has said.
According to the report, the prosecutors suspect that the LTTE members have used fake pay slips or Sri Lankan residents in Switzerland to obtain loans of between SFr70,000 - 100,000 ($73,000 - 104,000) and send the money to Sri Lanka where it was laundered locally and eventually used to finance weapons purchases during the civil war.
The Swiss Prosecutor's office has made an official request to Sri Lankan authorities last year to obtain permission to interrogate the LTTE members and Sri Lankan authorities have granted the request.
However, the interrogations will take place only in the presence of Swiss lawyers and no Sri Lankan authorities will be present during the interrogations to avoid undue pressure on the witnesses, the news report said.
The Netherlands last October convicted and sentenced five Sri Lankan Tamils accused of extorting money from other Dutch Tamils to fund the terrorist activities of LTTE.
The five men, all of whom are now Dutch citizens, had run front organizations like the Tamil Youth Organization and the Dutch Tamil Arts and Culture Organization to collect millions of euros to finance the terror war in Sri Lanka.
Following a long bloody battle the Sri Lankan government forces vanquished the terrorist organization in May 2009 but a recent Europol report says the organization is still active in Europe.


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