By Manopriya Gunasekera
Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne yesterday directed Power and Energy Minister Ravi Karunanayake and his wife to give a statement to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) on 7 July in connection with making false statements before the Presidential Commission of Inquiry during an investigation into fraudulent bond transactions.
He and his wife were ordered to be present at the CID at 10 a.m. on 7 July after the duo missed a previous appointment as they were overseas. The Colombo Chief Magistrate said the court understood that given the situation that prevailed in the country after the Easter Sunday attacks, it may have been difficult for the Minister and his wife to make their statements to the CID and told their lawyers to inform the couple of the new date.
Karunanayake and his wife were supposed to present themselves before the CID on 19 May, but their lawyers had informed the court that they were unable to do so as they were overseas.
The Magistrate observed that even though the submission before court gave the reason for their absence, it failed to provide a fresh date, whereupon the lawyers reached out to the Minister and his wife via phone to confirm the new date.
The Colombo Chief Magistrate also directed Minister Karunanayake’s daughter Onella Karunanayake to be present before the CID on 25 and 26 June to give a statement and present financial records of Global Transportation and Logistics Ltd.
The company is owned by Minister Karunanayake and his family. This directive was given after the court considered two motions submitted by Onella Karunanayake’s lawyer Attorney-at-Law Sajitha Jayawardena. Onella Karunanayake is also the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Global Transportation and Logistics.
State Counsel Nadie Aparna Suwadagoda represented the Attorney General’s Department at the hearing.