Former UNP General Secretary and former Health Minister Tissa Attanayake was today remanded til February 11, by the Colombo Fort Acting Magistrate Jayantha Dias Nanayakkara on charges of producing fraudulent documents.
The CID informed Court said an analytical report obtained from the Examiner of Questioned Documents (EQD) and the evidence recorded from several witnesses had revealed that the document displayed by Mr. Attanayake was forged.
The CID said the suspect had committed a punishable offence under Sections 454 and 459 of the Penal Code by forging a document and displaying it to the public as genuine.
It said the suspect had also committed an offence under Section 80-C of the Presidential Election Act for displaying a fake document prior to an election, for the purpose of affecting the result of that election, in relation to the personal character or conduct of any candidate.
Meanwhile, Counsel Vikum Basnayake with Deemani Beddewela and Buddhika Induragalle appearing for the suspect told Court that his client had found this document inside a file at the Health Ministry after he assumed duties as the newly appointed Health Minister on December 18.
Counsel said that since his client had been directly involved in the discussions which were held between the UNP and other political parties including the TNA and his client firmly believed that the agreement he found at the Ministry was genuine and as such he displayed it to the media.
Meanwhile, the CID told Court the investigation into the incident was continuing and that the witnesses could be interfered with if the suspect was released on bail.
Police Spokesman Ajith Rohana said Mr. Attanayake was arrested by the CID yesterday morning from his residence in Bauddhaloka Mawatha and taken to the CID office where a statement was recorded.
Mr. Attanayake publicly announced on December 22 last year that there was a secret agreement between the then Common Opposition Candidate Maithripala Sirisena and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe.
He claimed that he found a secret document where Maithripala Sirisena and Ranil Wickremesinghe had agreed on 15 points related to a proposed coalition with their signatures and that this could have an adverse effect on the peop;e.
Mr. Wickremesinghe said the document was false and complained to the CID on December 24 and a special inquiry was initiated as a result.
The CID recorded statements from 11 people including Mr. Sirisena, Mr. Wickremesinghe and Mr. Attanayake and sent the investigation reports to the Attorney General.
The AG has directed the detectives to take legal action against Mr. Attanayake as he had allegedly violated Section 459 of the Penal Code by using fraudulent documents to discredit the presidential candidate.(Lakmal Sooriyagoda and Sanath Desmond)