Former Istanbul district police chief detained in operation against prostitution gang in Istanbul
The former police chief of Istanbul’s Kadıköy district, İbrahim Kocaoğlu, was detained on Feb. 15 along with 11 other police officers within the scope of a large-scale operation against a prostitution gang, daily Habertürk reported on Feb. 16.
Kocaoğlu, who has been suspended since Feb. 8, is being accused of accepting bribes from the prostitution gang named after its leader, Hakan Ato, who is currently in jail. In total, Kocaoğlu, 11 police officers, one public official and three others were detained on Feb. 15.
According to the report, a woman identified only as Çiğdem B., allegedly a partner of a massage parlor used for prostitution, told the police that she met Kocaoğlu six-seven months ago and engaged in a relationship with him. She said that they bribed the police chief in order to keep the police away from the parlors.
“At first, we gave İbrahim 30,000 liras and three expensive smartphones so that he would turn a blind eye to the parlors and avert law enforcement. Then we set a regular fixed pay of 7,500 liras every week,” she said.
Other witnesses, including police officers, said she spoke boastfully about her relationship with the police chief.
“One day she came to the massage parlor cheerfully saying, ‘Hey girls, I’ve got a lover who’s a police chief. We’ve been hanging out for four-five days. I took a video after we had intercourse while he was unaware. There won’t be any raids on our massage parlor in Kadıköy. The police will cover up,’” said one of the suspects, identified only as Şükrü B.
Kocaoğlu was wounded in a bomb attack in the district of Beşiktaş in Istanbul on Dec. 10, 2016 where he was on duty as a sports police chief before being appointed to Kadıköy as police chief of the district.
The operation against prostitution in parlors, beauty salons and skin care shops was initiated by direct orders from Istanbul Police Chief Mustafa Çalışkan, Habertürk reported. Testimonies of the suspects and witnesses, including a couple of police officers, are the foremost evidence in the investigation file so far.
When Ato was arrested on Dec. 19, 2017, 10 flats, three estates, three automobiles, one motorcycle and one office that belong to him were seized.