Tirunelveli: A Chennai-based Sri Lankan Tamil refugee has been arrested on charges of planning the trafficking of more than 50 of his community members to Australia, police said today.
Chandrakanthan (38) was arrested yesterday by `Q` branch police for bringing about 53 Sri Lankan Tamils from various parts of the state to Courttalam near here to send them illegally to Australia for employment.
Cases under various sections of IPC and Foreigners Act
were registered against him, police said.
On a tip-off, police conducted a search at a lodge where
the group was staying and "secured" 53 Lankan Tamils,
including nine woman and five children.
Some of them told police that they had promised to give
Rs three lakh to Chandrakanthan for taking them to Australia
and paid an advance of Rs 10,000.
Of the 53 persons, 23 had recently come to Chennai on
tourist visas from Sri Lanka while an equal number were from
various non-refugee camps in the state. Seven others were
residing in refugee camps, police said.
`Q` branch police after questioning the persons handed
them over to local police for further investigation. Some of
them would be taken to Mandapam refugee camp, where their
documents could be verified, police said.