(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – Pastor Jerome Fernando today (May 26) filed a Fundamental Rights (FR) petition with the Supreme Court seeking an order preventing the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) from arresting him.
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), DIG in charge of the CID, the CID director and the Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the cybercrimes unit of the CID have been named as the respondents of the FR petition.
Pastor Fernando, who filed the FR petition through his attorneys, says the CID has initiated an investigation into a comment he had made during his sermon on April 30. The probes are carried out pursuant to the International Covenant on Civil & Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Penal Code.
The self-styled “prophet” says the police named him a suspect after presenting submissions to the Colombo Fort Magistrate’s Court.
Deeming the CID’s attempts to arrest him as ‘unlawful’, Pastor Fernando notes that the police have not presented, however, any piece of evidence to the court to prove that his comments threaten the religious harmony in the country.
Pastor Fernando, seeking a court order ruling that his fundamental rights are thus violated, also wants the Supreme Court to prevent the respondents from arresting him until the hearing of the FR petition is concluded.