Gota’s objections thrown out Avant Garde case to go ahead

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By 2017-11-18

By Kavindya Perera

Colombo Chief Magistrate Lal Ranasinghe Bandara yesterday (17), dismissed the request made by former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the Chairman of the Avant Garde Maritime Services Private Limited Nissanka Senadhipathy and six others, where they sought to acquit themselves from the case in which they have been charged with facilitating the firm to earn a sum Rs 11.4 billion, while maintaining a floating armoury and causing a financial loss to the State.

Filing objections on behalf of the first accused Rajapaksa in the case in February, counsels representing Rajapaksa stated that due to the manner in which the case had been filed it was difficult to sustain it, while adding that the Director General of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC) had filed the case without having obtained the necessary written approval.

However, the objections were rejected by the plaintiff. The plaintiff further noted that when filing such a case the Director General of the Commission did not need to obtain any written approval. Having taken into consideration all the objections, the Colombo Chief Magistrate rejected the request made by the eight accused calling for their release from the said case.

Afterwards, the 19 charges levelled against the eight suspects were read out before them.

Thereafter, the Colombo Chief Magistrate fixed 26 February, 2018 and 26 March, 2018 as the dates for the next hearing.

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