The hearing of a total of 19 soldiers who raided daily Hürriyet, the Hürriyet Daily News, CNN Türk and Kanal D at the Doğan Media Center in the Bağcılar district of Istanbul on the night of last year’s failed coup attempt will begin on July 17, one year after the attempted takeover.
According to the indictment prepared by the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, the defendants in the case are three former captains Erdal Şeker, Süleyman Ahmet Kaya and Mehmet Akif Aslan, who had been arrested, and two non-commissioned officers Muhammet Orhan Kaya and Muhammet Çınar along with 14 privates.
Vedat Barceğci, who had been killed in clashes, and four others who had been injured are also victims of the case, while 21 others and institutions, including Doğan TV, Doğan Music Production, Hürriyet Radio, D Production, Advertising and Distribution and Doğan Satellite Communication Services, are plaintiffs in the case.
The soldiers will be tried over four days in the Istanbul 27th High Criminal Court at Istanbul’s Çağlayan courthouse starting from July 17 regarding the case that they interrupted the broadcast and tried to seize the building on the night of July 15, 2016.
The Istanbul’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office had demanded three aggravated life sentences for each of the 19 soldiers on charges of “attempting to overthrow the constitutional order” and “obstructing the duties of the Turkish Republic” in addition to jail terms ranging from 7.5 years to 15 years on charges of “being a member of an armed terror organization.”
The indictment had stated that the coup soldiers entered the parking lot of the Doğan Media Center at 3:00 a.m. on July 16, 2016. Soon, they split into two groups, opened fire into the air and shouted, “The General Staff has seized the power of the state.”
They also threatened personnel at the Doğan Media Center with guns and demanded they open the doors, the indictment stated. One of the captains also granted permission to another soldier under his command to shoot anyone who moved.