Vijitha Thero arrested and remanded

Thursday, 26 June 2014 00:19 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The police yesterday arrested Ven. Watareka Vijitha thero, a Buddhist monk who openly spoke against the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS), over allegations he had staged a recent attack on himself. Vijitha thero was arrested after he was discharged from the Colombo National hospital where he was receiving treatment and produced before the Panadura Magistrate last afternoon. Police spokesman SSP Ajith Rohana said that legal action is to be filed against the monk over the staged abduction and attack and false complaint. The monk was produced in court and remanded until 2 July. However lawyers for the monk say he had been forced to confess to staging the attack. The monk was was found slashed, bound and left on the road in the Panadura recently. Ajith Rohana said the monk had initially claimed that he was abducted by men in robes and later he found himself in hospital. However the Police Spokesman said that investigations had found the statements made by the monk were false and that he had staged the abduction with his relatives. Ajith Rohana said that the relatives of the monk had confessed to assisting the monk to stage the whole incident and medical reports revealed the injuries caused to the monk were self-inflicted. Watareka vijitha thero has been openly critical of the actions of the BBS and was even verbally abused by the BBS at a press conference in Colombo. (Colombo Gazette)

 Monk to make not guilty plea : Lawyers

Lawyers for Watarekke Vijitha Thero say their client has insisted he was guilty and instructed them to enter a not-guilty plea. Attorney at Law Lakshan Dias, told Daily FT that confessions made under duress had no basis in a court of law. He said the Buddhist priest would be submitting an affidavit over the next few days, with his version of events. (DB)