Page last updated at 14:55 GMT, Friday, 12 June 2009 15:55 UK

Tamil jailed for supplying Tigers

Arunachalam Chrishanthak
Chrishanthakumar was convicted for terrorism-related offences

The founder of the British Tamil Association has been jailed for two years for supplying the militant Tamil Tigers group.

Arunachalam Chrishanthakumar, 52, was sentenced at London's Old Bailey for illegally procuring equipment for the Sri Lankan group.

He had been convicted of receiving electrical components for terrorism and receiving documents for terrorism.

Three other men who had been tried alongside him were cleared.

This was a protracted, deliberate breaking of a law
Justice Saunders

Jonathan Laidlaw QC, prosecuting, said Chrishanthakumar procured equipment for the Tigers with an "obvious terrorist purpose".

Mr Justice Saunders said: "This was a protracted, deliberate breaking of a law. These are very serious offences which warrant substantial sentences.

"The terrorist law has to be obeyed as part of our obligations internationally."

The judge said the case was exceptional because, at the time the offences were carried out, the Tamil Tigers were not a banned group in Sri Lanka because of the ongoing peace talks with the Sri Lankan government.

The judge told the Old Bailey: "He is a thoroughly decent man who deliberately broke the law in support of a cause he fervently believed in."

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