Turkish lawyers seek sentence for film crew
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
A group of protesters rally near the US Embassy in Ankara against the film. DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZTwo Turkish lawyers filed an official complaint Sept. 17 against the producer and director of the movie “The Innocence of Muslims,” which has sparked violent protests across the Muslim world.
Özlem Gezeker and Özgür Meriç Turan, two attorneys registered with the Ankara Bar Association, lodged their formal complaint petition with the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office, the Anatolia news agency reported.
“The person or persons who were the producer and director of this movie, which is being openly screened on the Internet, in a genre which we believe doesn’t befit art or artists and in a unity of action which goes beyond its intent, are playing with our moral values, which we believe to be most sacred, before the eyes of the entire world,” Gezeker and Turan’s petition reads, Anatolia reported.
Film provokes Turks to hatred
The two argued that “the suspects have disrupted the Turkish people’s peace of mind and have openly
provoked the people to hatred and enmity.”
The lawyers also note in their petition that there is no legal obstacle to trying foreigners abroad under the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), and allege that the suspects have committed crimes covered by Article 216 of the TCK, which calls for prison sentences of up to three years for provoking people to hatred and enmity or humiliation. In the event that they come to Turkey, the accused should be penalized to the fullest extent of the law, the petition said.
In a separate development, Egypt’s public prosecutor yesterday ordered that seven U.S.-based Egyptian Copts be tried over their role in the anti-Islam film, his office said, according to Agence France-Presse.
The seven - Adel Riad, Morris Sadek, Nabil Bissada, Esmat Zaklama, Elia Bassily, Ihab Yaacoub and Jack Atallah - were accused of “insulting the Islamic religion, insulting the Prophet [Mohammed] and inciting sectarian strife.” The prosecution said they were involved in either the production or the distribution of the film “Innocence of Muslims.” No trial date has yet been set.