Sri Lanka police special unit to probe financial crimes

EconomyNext – The Sri Lankan government has decided to set up a financial crimes unit in the police to probe large-scale financial transactions, including money laundering, government spokesman Lakshman Kiriella said Thursday.

"With some allegations we have enough evidence (to prosecute)," Kiriella told a news conference. "But some crimes like money laundering are complex problems and you need special laws and to gather more evidence."

Kiriella said the government decided to establish a Financial Crimes Investigation Division under the supervision of the police chief "to investigate into large scale financial transactions including money laundering activities."

A new provision will be introduced under the Police Ordinance.

India has promised support to Sri Lanka to train people to probe money laundering activities while the United States has said it will provide support to recover ill-gotten wealth stashed abroad.

The Cabinet of Ministers had also approved a proposal by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to set up a secretariat to investigate into alleged large-scale corruption and malpractices of the previous government.

It will be responsible for making recommendations to prevent such corruption and malpractices in the future, Kiriella said.

The former Mahinda Rajapaksa regime was ousted in the January 8 presidential poll in which allegations of corruption and abuse of power was a big campaign issue.

 

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