He was also head of the tender committee of the RDA, in addition to being appointed by Mahinda Rajapaksa as secretary to the ministry of highways, port and shipping.
Pemasiri stands accused of having abused his office, not calling for tenders and giving the contracts to cronies of the Rajapaksas, obtaining consultancy services at exorbitant rates and violating the road construction guidelines.
Correspondence between the UDA chairman, tender committee and the ministry, including the letters of permission, were all signed by Pemasiri himself.
The subject minister at the time was Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Fled to Australia
With the regime change on 08 January 2015, Pemasiri fled to Australia.
Highways minister of the 100-day government Kabir Hashim had told the media at the World Trade Centre that the biggest financial frauds in the Rajapaksa regime had been committed at the highways ministry.
However, not even a complaint had been made to the FCID regarding them so far.