Aug 12, Colombo: Colombo Fort Magistrate Thilina Gamage today (12) rejected a request made by the former Sri Lankan ambassador to Russia Mr. Udayanga Weeratunga for permission to go abroad.
Mr. Udayanga Weeratunga has been named as a suspect in a case pending in connection with an alleged misappropriation of 7 million US dollars in the purchase of MiG aircraft for the Air Force.
When the ex-diplomat was released on bail in connection with the case earlier, the court took steps to ban his foreign travel.
Presenting a motion before the court today, the lawyer representing Udayanga Weeratunga told the court that his client has to travel abroad to participate in an international trade conference, and requested the court to temporarily lift the ban.
However, the Criminal Investigation Department objected to his request pointing out that he was absconding for a long time.
Weeratunga, who evaded several arrest warrants and remained a fugitive in the UAE was arrested when he returned to Sri Lanka in February 2020.
He was wanted in connection with an investigation by the Financial Crimes Investigation Division (FCID) into the alleged embezzlement of public funds to the tune of US$ 7.833 million with regard to procurement of six MiG aircraft in 2006 and money laundering.
The magistrate after considering the facts presented, rejected the suspect's request to be allowed to go abroad.