The Sri Lanka Navy yesterday (27) apprehended a total of 47 persons suspected to be on an illegal migration attempt to Australia via sea.
Among the apprehended individuals were 34 males including five persons involved in this racket, six females and seven children, all aged between 01 and 50, identified as residents of Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Mannar, Wennappuwa, Nattandiya, Chilaw and Batticaloa.
The suspects were later handed over to the Colombo Harbour Police for onward legal proceedings, while the multiday fishing trawler used by the group was seized by the Navy.
The Navy warned the public that continuous observations have been made of ruinous fishing vessels being used for such journeys and they are not at all seaworthy, thus posing a greater risk to their lives.
Moreover, the public were adviced to avoid being convicted before the law by being caught in such traps posed by smugglers, as those deported from Australia will no longer be eligible to obtain a valid visa to Australia later.