The boat tragedy recently near Australia’s Christmas Island that resulted in the death of about 100 persons seeking asylum has unraveled the truth behind the human smuggling racket.
Close to 75 Sri Lankans have been traveling in the boat that met with the accident and the rest of the passengers of the boat have been from Syria and other Middle Eastern countries that are in turmoil.
The center of this massive human smuggling business is located in Colombo. The mastermind behind this operation is Thilakaratnam Ravichandran alias Celltel Ravi. He is the main lackey of one of the President’s closest advisors, Thirukumar Nadesan.
Thiru Nadesan is the Chairman of Hilton Hotel and he has provided Celletel Ravi with all the infrastructure facilities required by him to carry out this operation.
Thiru Nadesan has provided several rooms at the Hilton Hotel to Celltel Ravi and these rooms are used by Ravi to meet agents of human smugglers from Tamil Nadu and the Middle East. Some human smugglers are even provided lodging facilities at the hotel.
Celletel Ravi collects the down payments to smuggle people to Australia at the Hilton Hotel. Some of these payments are accepted by Ravi through credit card payments and Nadesan has provided the necessary facilities to him.
As a result of these transactions, financial institutions have blacklisted the Hilton Hotel among other institutions in South Asia. Celletel Ravi was in jail in 2003 over a credit card fraud and for possessing a false British passport. Since he was released from jail, Nadesan has been using Ravi for his racketeering work. Nadesan uses Thilekaratnam Ravichandran alias Celltel Ravi to threaten his competitors in the business world. Nadesan has provided Ravi with over 10 mobile phones that do not display its caller ID for this purpose. Celltel Ravi had sold nine of these telephones for Rs. 75,000.
The Hilton Hotel in Colombo under Nadesan’s chairmanship has become a den for thieves and smugglers and apart from Celltel Ravi, underworld figures like King’s Park Rohana alias Wewa Rohana also frequent the hotel.
While using the Hilton Hotel as the center of the human smuggling racket, it is also used by Celltel Ravi to entertain senior officers of the Police and Sri Lanka Navy. Ravi provides them with stocks of foreign liquor and foreign prostitutes. Therefore, Ravi’s human smuggling racket is carried out in connivance with the police and navy.
The refugees bound to Australia are taken by the navy with the knowledge of the government to Malaysia and they are taken in different boats together with citizens from the Middle East to Australia’s Christmas Island. The Malaysian agent in this human smuggling racket is one Tyon, who is a well known political racketeer. He is also a partner of Cooperatives and Internal Trade Minister Johnston Fernando in his business dealings. Celltel Ravi is being prvided with the necessary facilities to carry out business with Tyon by Johnston Fernando’s coordinating secretary, Rizly Ilyas also known as Dida.
Thilekaratnam Ravichandran also has an official ID issued by the Cooperatives and Internal Trade Ministry.
Even after the recent accident involving a human smuggling boat, these people have taken steps to send another boat to Christmas Island. Thilekaratnam Ravichandran alias Celltel Ravi, who was without any cash some time back, has now managed to purchase a brand new BMW vehicle after earning money with Nadesan’s help. It is also learnt that he had deposited 1,000 gold sovereigns at the Hatton national Bank.