The Chickens Are Coming Home To Roost - Happy Easter James!
Ministry team goes to Seychelles for probeThe Finance Ministry is sending investigators to Seychelles to probe allegations of illegal transfer of funds and assets during the former regime, Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake said. He said the officials would have discussions with Seychelles authorities in a bid to gain more information about the funds illegally transferred from Sri Lanka. Any transfers of Sri Lankan funds from Seychelles to other countries would also be discussed.
The minister said the Central Bank was also probing the reasons why a Bank of Ceylon branch was set up in the Seychelle in 2011. There were only about 64 Sri Lankans living in Seychelles and he saw no need for a BoC branch there. Initial investigations have revealed that the BoC branch was opened without the Central Bank’s approval. The BoC has only made a request to the Central Bank but approval had not been given.
Mr. Karunanayake said the Central Bank had been told to take action against any officials involved in these illegal moves and transactions. The minister said there were also charges that cargo had been sent to Seychelles onboard the national airlines. “We believe that persons were taking advantage of the tax concessions in Seychelles,” he said.
The Financial Crimes Investigations Division of the Police also has begun inquiries into the illegal transfer of funds to Seychelles. A World Bank team is also providing assistance to carry out investigations on money laundering. The FCID will record statements from officials of the BoC next week.
By Damith Wickremasekara
Source Sri Lanka Times