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* Charges to be filed against Sri Lanka's former military chief within two weeks
Thu, Feb 25, 2010, 08:21 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Feb 25, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government said today that charges will be filed under the Sri Lankan Penal Code and Exchange Control Act against the former military chief and defeated presidential candidate General (Retd) Sarath Fonseka within the next two weeks.

The government Spokesperson, Minister of Export Development and International Trade Prof. G.L. Peiris said at a media briefing held at the Government Information Department today that the defeated presidential candidate will be charged with fraud, condoning fraud, plotting against the government, creating unrest within the army and keeping army deserters under his protection.

In addition, charges will also be made under the Exchange Control Act for violating and condoning the violation of foreign exchange laws, the spokesman said.

General Fonseka, who lost the last month's presidential election to the incumbent president with a wide margin, was arrested on February 8 by military police. Since then he was detained at the Navy Headquarters.

The Criminal Investigation Department during an investigation into Fonseka's alleged financial deals in arms procurement for the Army found cash worth 75 million rupees in US dollars and sterling pounds in four bank deposit boxes that belonged to his son-in-law's mother Ms. Asoka Tilakaratne. She had claimed that the money belonged to Fonseka.

The Supreme Court recently rejected a petition filed on his behalf by his wife seeking his release challenging the arrest.

General Fonseka, the leader of the Democratic National Alliance yesterday signed nomination papers while under detention to contest the General Election from the Colombo District.

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