Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP Rishad Bathiudeen and his brother Riyaj Bathiudeen were arrested after an exhaustive analysis of evidence for allegedly aiding and abetting the Easter Sunday terrorist attackers.
Police Spokesperson DIG Ajith Rohana said the arrests were made pursuant to a careful and detailed analysis of scientific and technical evidence, financial transactions and communication network of the attackers and other suspects linked to them.
The MP and his brother are currently detained at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for questioning under the provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA).
“They would initially be held for a period of 72 hours and we expect to obtain another 90-day detention order against the suspects if required,” he said.
He said the MP was arrested on Saturday morning in a joint operation by the CID and the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID). He added that the Police have so far arrested 702 suspects in connection with the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks on April 21, 2019. He added that 202 suspects out of them were in remand custody, while 83 suspects were detained by the CID and the TID under the provisions of the PTA. Among the detainees are the wife of ring-leader and suicide bomber Zaharan Hashim, her father and the father of the two Ibrahim brothers.
He also said that about 80 people had been arrested for attending classes and lectures on extremism.