Shyamal’s family hires private investigators to probe death

Death of UN prosecutor in Tanzania
By Leon Berenger

The family of Shyamal Rajapaksa, a UN prosecutor who died under questionable circumstances while on duty in Arush, Tanzania has hired private investigators in the United States to probe his death.

Lalitha Rajapaksa, mother of the victim told the Sunday Times the family was not happy with the position taken by the UN regarding to the circumstances that led to his death at a private flat in Arush Tanzania some three months ago.

“There are so many things lacking in the UN explanations, which only lead to suspicion that somebody somewhere was attempting a cover up for reasons known only to them”, Mrs. Rajapaksa said.

The UN had at first maintained the prosecutor was the victim of a murder but changed this position a day later to say that he had died due to natural causes after suffering a major heart attack.

“This goes to complicate the matter even further and the UN must take full responsibility since this is a serious matter relating to death of one of its employee. They say something today and then change its version the next day. This is not acceptable”, the mother charged.

Initial investigations into the death revealed the prosecutor was the victim of a botched mugging after his wallet, wristwatch and phone were reportedly stolen. A lone security guard attached to the premises told police the victim was in the company of two men on the day of the incident and the pair were seen rushing off during the late hours of the night.

The victim’s limp body was found in a pool of blood the following day by the visiting woman house keeper. Mr. Rajapaksa was probing war crimes on the Rwana Tribunal and had already documented, what was described as a ‘damning’ report which was to be made public shortly.

The UN has so far failed to comment on the whereabouts of this document which has irritated the victim’s family even further.

The victim’s wife Prasanthi is also a UN prosecutor serving in The Hague. The late UN prosecutor is also the nephew of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and brother of UPFA Parliamentarian (MP) Nirupuma Rajapaksa and a close associate of Mr. Stephen Rapp who was the Chief of Prosecution at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

Mr. Rapp is currently the U.S. President Barack Obama’s point man on war crimes.

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