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Deported asylum seeker arrested in Colombo- Australia

[DailyMirror, Tuesday, 6 October 2009 20:38 No Comment]

A Sri Lankan asylum seeker deported at the weekend has been arrested and charged with people smuggling in Colombo, the Age newspaper reported. Indika Mendis was among nine men flagged for forced deportation last week as the Government began returning people from Christmas Island to countries of origin against their will.

He failed to meet criteria for protection in Australia.

According to the Age newspaper in Australia the Australian Immigration Department confirmed the arrest and that it sought more information on its circumstances. It is alleged the man was beaten by police and was too frightened to speak.

”Whether someone has broken Sri Lankan law is something for the Sri Lankan courts to determine,” a departmental spokesman said.

Mr Mendis was named as the skipper of a boat that sailed into Shark Bay, Western Australia, last November. But the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre’s Pamela Curr said the real criminal was still at large.

When Daily Mirror online contacted police spokesman senior DIG Nimal Mediwaka over the report he was unable to confirm the specific case but said that it is normal procedure for any illegal asylum seeker deported back to the country to be arrested.

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