Armed gang snatch gold chain
[TamilNet, Sunday, 02 August 1998, 23:59 GMT]
Audacious thieves siezed an expensive gold chain which was worn by an elderly woman living down Barathi Lane, in an area under the control of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) in Batticaloa town, on Sunday around 4:00 p.m., said sources in Batticaloa.
A group of Tamil speaking armed men in civilian clothing had entered the home of the S. Navaneethan, Municipal Commissioner of Batticaloa and asked for him by name.
On being informed by Mr. Navaneethan's mother-in-law and sister-in-law that he was out, they asked the women why he had not answered a letter they had sent him.
When Mr. Navaneethan's mother-in-law had stepped forward to speak to them, they snatched the gold chain ('Thaalikody') on her neck and after warning the women not to report the incident, went away.
The reference to the letter by the criminals is an attempt at drawing a red herring, said sources.
There is strong suspicion that the persons who entered Mr. Navaneethan's home were members of a local armed group, who are operating with the connivance of the Sri Lankan Army, said sources.