Final hearings into Zarrab, Halkbank executive case to start on Oct 30: US Judge
REUTERS photoU.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman announced on June 12 that final hearings into a case in which the Iranian-born Turkish businessman Reza Zarrab and the former chief executive of Halkbank Mehmet Hakan Atilla are accused of attempting to evade U.S. sanctions on Iran will start on October 30, according to various media reports.
Mehmet Hakan Atilla’s lawyer, Victor J. Rocco, reportedly on June 9 asked the court for more time for the purpose of analyzing thousands of e-mails and voice recordings totaling 125 gigabytes that were presented by the prosecutor as evidence in the case. Rocco had asked until August 1 for his legal term to conduct a preliminary study on how much time was needed to analyze all of the data presented as evidence.
Berman, however, on June 12 denied Rocco’s demand for additional time in an interim court decision, indicating that all parties’ opinions were taken, and following evaluations, the final hearings would be launched starting on Oct. 30.
Both Zarrab and Atilla are charged with participating in a multi-year scheme to violate U.S. sanctions against Iran.
The court had first designated this year’s January month to launch the final hearings into Zarrab’s case, but as the businessman’s lawyers asked for additional time the hearings were postponed to August. But, once Atilla - who was arrested on March 27 at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City - was included in the case, the judge adjourned the hearings to a later date.