ByLock can be considered sole evidence of Gülen network membership: Supreme Court

ByLock can be considered sole evidence of Gülen network membership: Supreme Court

ANKARA
ByLock can be considered sole evidence of Gülen network membership: Supreme Court

Turkey’s Supreme Court has ruled that use of smartphone application ByLock can be considered as evidence of membership of the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), widely believed to have been behind the failed July 15, 2016 coup attempt. 

According to the Supreme Court’s General Board of Criminal Department, use of the ByLock messaging application constitutes sufficient evidence that a suspect is a follower of the U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, daily Habertürk reported on Sept. 26. 

The court previously sentenced ByLock-using judges Metin Özçelik and Mustafa Başer to 10 years in jail on charges of terrorism and abuse of duty. The latest ruling comes after a review of that ruling, with the Supreme Court approving the sentence given to Özçelik and Başer. 

The ruling means that using ByLock, which was used almost exclusively by followers of Gülen to communicate, can be considered the sole evidence needed to try a suspect over FETÖ membership. 

With the ruling, the Supreme Court stated that having ByLock installed on one’s phone is enough to convict a suspect.