Court seizes properties of ex-footballer Hakan Şükür, father
ADAPAZARI - Doğan News AgencyA Turkish court has ruled for the seizure of property and possessions owned by a famous ex-footballer and his father worth 200 million Turkish Liras after identifying the two as providing financial support to the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), as part of a probe on Aug. 12.
The decision by a court in the western province of Sakarya came a day after prosecutors’ issued warrants for footballer-turned-politician Hakan Şükür and his father Selmet Şükür over alleged links to FETÖ. While Hakan Şükür was reported to have fled to the United States, Selmet Şükür was detained on Aug. 12 after being caught in a mosque in the province’s Adapazarı distrcit.
Finding that the father and son had been providing financial support to the organization, which was blamed for orchestrating the July 15 failed coup attempt in Turkey after years of infiltration into the military, the court ruled for the seizure of their real estate properties.
According to the inspection, the Şükürs had a number of real estate properties across the country, with apartments in Sakarya, Antalya, Bodrum and Istanbul’s Bakırköy, Beşiktaş and Büyükçekmece districts, in addition to buildings in Adapazarı and Sapanca and fields in Kandıra. Officers have also found that Selmet Şükür built luxury villas on a 10 decare-field in the Serdivan district of Sakarya.
Tax inspectors have also found that Hakan Şükür used to own a preparatory school that was closed as part of a previous FETÖ probe in central Adapazarı.
Şükür is accused by prosecutors in Sakarya province east of Istanbul of being a member of the organization of the U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen.
Şükür was one of the stars of Turkey’s third place performance in the 2002 World Cup and a household name in the football-mad country.
A striker whose football career stretched from 1987 to 2007, Şükür was by far the most prolific goal scorer in the history of the Turkish national side, finding the net 51 times in 112 appearances.
He was a stalwart player for Istanbul side Galatasaray but also had stints abroad for Inter Milan, Parma and Blackburn Rovers.
His goal after just 11 seconds of play against South Korea in 2002 remains the fastest goal in World Cup history.
After football, Şükür went into politics and was elected an MP with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in 2011.
But he resigned in 2013 after a vast corruption probe that targeted senior government figures, siding with the Gülen movement.
Şükür had voiced objections to the government move to shut down schools run by the Gülen movement. He had in June gone on trial in absentia on charges of insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on social media.