The Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) informed Colombo Additional Magistrate Thanuja Jayatunga yesterday that investigations were ongoing into the Rs.4 million remitted to Sri Lanka by three Sri Lankans allegedly involved in training with ISIS terrorists in Syria.
Investigations revealed that the money had been sent by Mohamed Aruz Mohamed Zuhair and the two brothers Mohamed Izak Ahamed and Zurfas Nilam – the duo has been identified as the very first Sri Lankans to have gone to Syria to join the ISIS.
It was revealed that Mohamed Izak Ahamed had sent part of this money to his parents resident at Sir Baron Jayathilaka Road in Mount Lavinia. It was also informed that his father had lodged a complaint over this with the TID where he stated that Mohamed Aruz Mohamed Zuhair had called him on WhatsApp in September 2018 and told his son Mohamed Izak Ahamed’s daughter will bring a parcel of money to his residence and that to keep it safe until further notice.
A few days later, a woman with her face fully covered had arrived and given a parcel to be handed over to Mohamed Aruz. The complainant had also told that his daughter had kept the money in a cupboard at the bedroom without examining what it contained. After the lapse of seven days, a man with his face covered had given a parcel and asked to give it to Mohamed Aruz Mohamed Zuhair. This time too, they had kept the parcel in the same place for safety.
Later, Mohamed Aruz had called him and asked to convert the money to dollars and keep it safe until he communicated again. The complainant had also told the police that the parcels contained over a staggering Rs.4 million and that he got it converted to dollars from three foreign currency exchange centres in Wellawatte.
The TID had taken the money into custody and sought court approval to get the dollars amounting to USD 23,000 examined by the Central Bank for their authenticity. Considering the facts revealed in court, the judge issued a notice to the Finance Manager of Central Bank to ascertain the currency notes and submit a report. (Nivanthi Ranasinghe)