Five police officers arrested over alleged extrajudicial killing

Five police officers, including an Officer in Charge (OIC) were arrested today over the death of a suspect in police custody in April 2012.

Nimal Chandrasiri Dahanayke (42), a fisherman of Thalpitiya, Wadduwa, died while in the custody of the Wadduwa Police.

According to the information that the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) had received at the time, Chandrasiri Dasanayaka of Thalpitiya, Wadduwa was illegally arrested by the police officers attached to the Wadduwa Police Station and later extrajudicially killed inside the station on 15 April 2012.

Chandrasiri was a key witness in a case filed against the Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the Wadduwa Police Station where the petitioner, the owner of a hotel in the same area, states that his fundamental rights were violated by the OIC and other police officers.

According to Thushara Sampath (20), the eldest son of the deceased, Chandrasiri, a father of 3 children left home at 4.45 a.m. on that day to proceed to his place of business Thalpitiya in Wadduwa. Chandrasiri was a fish trader by profession.

Later Sampath learned from his friend that his father had been arrested by a team of police officers at around 5 a.m. at the Thalpitiya Junction and brought to the Wadduwa Police Station. Immediately upon hearing the news Sampath went to the police station where he found his father lying on the floor of a cell.

When he approached the bars of the cell, his father was able to recognise him and Sampath could see that he was in great pain. He further observed that his father was bleeding from the injuries on his face and pleaded with the police officers on duty to provide some water for his father. However, the officers ignored his request. Sampath then rushed to home and informed his mother and took her to the police station. On their arrival, a police officer told them that Chandrasiri had been admitted to the Panadura Base Hospital.

They went to the base hospital and learned from the hospital staff that the officers had handed over the body to the mortuary indicating that he was pronounced dead on arrival. (Colombo Gazette)


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