38 detained as part of ‘match-fixing conspiracy’ probe
ISTANBULSome 38 people were detained on April 19 as police conducted simultaneous raids in 28 provinces in a probe into the allegations that suspects linked to the U.S. based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen conspired a massive match-fixing probe.
The suspects, who the prosecutors say are members of the purported Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETÖ)/ Parallel State Structure (PDY), are accused of launching a bogus investigation on match-fixing allegations.
Turkey’s biggest investigation into the match-fixing claims was opened on July 3, 2011 with more than 100 suspects, including Fenerbahçe chairman Aziz Yıldırım.
Yıldırım was first sentenced to jail in 2012 and fined 1.3 million Turkish Liras ($560,000) for forming a criminal gang and engaging in match-fixing during the 2010-2011 season. He served around one year behind bars before being freed pending a retrial.
An Istanbul prosecutor demanded on Oct. 5, 2015, the acquittal of high-profile suspects, including Yıldırım. The Istanbul 13th High Criminal Court issued its unanimous ruling on Oct. 9, acquitting Yıldırım, as well as other high-profile suspects.
The charges against the suspects detained on April 19 include “forming a terror organization,” “being a member of a terror organization,” and “illegal wiretapping.”
Those wanted for detention included former daily Zaman Editor-In-Chief Ekrem Duman, former Fatih University Dean Şerif Ali Tekalan, former high-level police officers Osman Akkuş and Mutlu Ekizoğlu, and many other officials who took part in the match-fixing probe.