Seventeen suspected Tamils detained in France

2nd April 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, April 1, 2007 (AFP) - Seventeen suspected members of the Tamil Tigers rebel group were detained Sunday in Paris during an investigation into terrorist financing activities, sources close to the case said.

PARIS, April 1, 2007 (AFP) - Seventeen suspected members of the Tamil Tigers rebel group were detained Sunday in Paris during an investigation into terrorist financing activities, sources close to the case said.

Police made the arrests under the direction of anti-terrorist judge Jean-Louis Bruguiere, the sources said.

The suspects are alleged to be involved in extortion, violence and detentions as part of fundraising activities for the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, who are fighting a separatist war in Sri Lanka.

The Tigers were put on the EU terrorist list in May last year.
 
Those detained are suspected of having raised six million euros (eight million dollars) in France last year.
 
Families were required to send 2,000 euros (2,700 dollars) per year to the organisation, and merchants had to pay up to 6,000 euros, sources said. Those who did not pay were threatened or detained, they said.

Those in charge of raising the money were allowed to keep 20 percent as payment, the sources said.

The Tamil community in France includes about 70,000 people.

The Tamil Tigers have waged a 35-year campaign for independence in Sri Lanka that has claimed more than 60,000 lives.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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