Investigate Basil & Gotabaya Rajapaksa who have violated U​.​S. federal Laws

Investigate Basil & Gotabaya Rajapaksa who have violated U​.​S. federal Laws

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Why this petition matters

Started by D Fernando



Sri Lanka, in early April 2022, declared bankruptcy – the first time since her independence in 1948 – is now in negotiation with the International Monetary Fund to restructure its debts and seek fresh monetary assistance. The United States has approximately 17% stakes in IMF and can be a deciding factor in these negotiations.  The nation has faced serious food and energy crisis having depleted its essential medicines. The Rajapaksa family which is governing the nation – except for a brief four years in-between - caused the current bankruptcy. Several family members of the First Family are/were U.S. citizens alleged to have amassed wealth and prime property in foreign countries including the U.S. 

A diplomatic cable (now declassified) dated May 15, 2007, to the state department in Washington referred to one of the Rajapaksa family members (Basil) – who still holds US citizenship while engaged in his brothers’ administration in Sri Lanka – as a corrupt person.

The nationwide protest which started in early March 2022, and continues to date with Sri Lankan expatriates in other countries joining, has mainly targeted the Rajapaksa family’s corrupt practices, amassing wealth through ‘unproductive’ development projects – mostly with the assistance of the PRC – swindling Sri Lankan assets to other nations including the U.S.

The issue before American federal agencies is whether such funds were transferred to the American soil, if so, whether any federal laws were violated, how it was done, and whether relevant U.S. agencies were aware of it. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act could be a yardstick.

Sri Lanka’s current president Gotabaya Rajapaksa despite renouncing his US citizenship, his spouse and son continue to be citizens. 

It is pertinent to mention here, according to the April 1, 2022, official announcement of the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Colombia of the U.S. Department of Justice that former ambassador for Sri Lanka in the U.S. Jaliya Wickremasuriya, a first cousin of Sri Lanka’s incumbent president Gotabaya Rajapaksa, pleaded guilty to diverting and attempting to embezzle $332,027 from the government of Sri Lanka during its 2013 purchase of a new embassy building in Washington, D.C. The charge carries a statutory maximum of five years in prison and potential financial penalties, the announcement stated. (

The governing Rajapaksa brothers have violated the UNSCR 1718 in purchasing military equipment from North Korea and Iran, and in April 2022 during an interview ( the US citizen Basil Rajapaksa admitted to that effect. The transaction was done under the direction of his brother Gotabaya as defense secretary while he was a US citizen. This warrants an investigation by US federal agencies.

According to a (Wikileaks) leaked U.S. cable, the weapons deal between Colombo and Pyongyang — which included rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and multiple rocket launchers (MRLs) — undoubtedly ran afoul of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1718.  

The diplomatic cable from Secretary Hilary Clinton to the U.S. Embassy in Sri Lanka ( provides all the details of this transaction.


We Sri Lankan expatriates who are Naturalized Citizens of the United States do make the following suggestions to the U.S. Congress:

  1. To bring a Resolution in the United States Congress expressing its Constitutional desire to activate an investigation to ascertain whether Sri Lankan assets were fraudulently transferred to the U.S., if so, in what manner it was executed, and whether any U.S. Federal laws were violated in doing so.
  2. Congress, through its Resolution, direct the Department of Justice to investigate Sri Lankan-origin U.S. citizens – past and present – if they had violated federal statutes if so, to bring them to justice.
  3. Taking the (now declassified) diplomatic cable signed by then-Secretary of State Hilary Rodham Clinton, activate an investigation of how two American citizens of Sri Lankan origin who had high stakes in a previous Sri Lankan administration engaged in negotiating an arms deal with North Korea and Iran in violation of UNSCR 1718. One of them still remains a U.S. citizen.
  4. This appeal to the United States Congress is in keeping with the high norm of good governance, a hallmark of American democracy and a plank of its foreign policy.

Thank you

Sri Lankans living in the United States of America

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