Aug 25, Colombo: Sri Lanka Navy in two separate incidents today arrested 98 illegal migrants bound for Australia and handed them over to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) for further investigations.
In one incident a Fast Naval Patrol Craft attached to the Western Naval Command of Sri Lanka Navy intercepted a multi-day fishing trawler carrying 77 people onboard in the seas off North Western coastal town of Chilaw.
The 53 Tamils including one woman and 24 Sinhalese have been brought to Modera Fisheries Harbor and handed over to the CID.
In the other incident 21 persons including 19 Tamils and 2 Muslims onboard a multi-day trawler were intercepted by the Eastern Naval Command in the seas east of Batticaloa. They were brought to the handed Trincomalee Harbor to be handed over to the CID.
The arrested would-be asylum seekers are residents of Jaffna, Mullaitivu, Colombo, Negombo Chilaw, Vavuniya, Puttalam, Galgamuwa, Trincomalee, Muttur, Ampara, Batticaloa and Kinniya.
Sri Lanka Navy is battling a surge of illegal migration attempts this year. The Navy has arrested 478 Australia-bound illegal migrants this month alone.