Four prosecutors, one commander detained in Syria-bound intelligence trucks case
HATAY – Anadolu Agency
DHA PhotoFour prosecutors and one commander, for whom arrest warrants were issued after their halting of Syria-bound National Intelligence Organization (MİT) trucks in Turkey’s south last year, have been detained.
The Tarsus 2nd High Criminal Court ordered the arrest of four prosecutors, along with a commander who ordered the Syria-bound trucks belonging to MİT to be stopped and searched.
A crisis erupted after the MİT trucks bound for Syria were stopped and searched by authorities on Jan. 1, 2014, in the southern province of Hatay. Another group of trucks was searched by the gendarmerie in the southern province of Adana on Jan. 19.
Arrest warrants for former Adana Chief Public Prosecutor Süleyman Bağrıyanık, prosecutors Aziz Takçı, Özcan Şişman, Ahmet Karaca, and former Adana Gendarmerie Commander Özkan Çokay were issued on the grounds of “attempting to topple or stop it [the Turkish government] partially or completely from doing its duty by using force and violence.”
Bağrıyanık, Şişman and Karaca were detained where they live in Antalya, Adana and Gaziantep, respectively, and brought to the Tarsus court, while Takçı was detained in Zonguldak and sent to Tarsus. Çokay went to Tarsus courthouse May 7 with his lawyer to testify.
Takçı was initially not found in his Zonguldak home on the evening of May 6 but came to the Zonguldak police department in early May 7 with a police escort.
“I am not making any statements right now. I will make a written announcement,” Takçı said May 7 before the Zonguldak courthouse.
The second chamber of the Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK) decided on Jan. 15 to remove from duty Bağrıyanık, Karaca, Takçı, Şişman and Yaşar Kavalcıklıoğlu, the five prosecutors involved in the incident. The decision passed with a majority of votes and was justified based on “the safety of investigations and not harming the judiciary’s influence and reputation.”
Turkish authorities in January 2015 said all websites publishing alleged records related to the Syrian-bound MİT trucks would be blocked, presaging a possible new ban on Twitter and Facebook. The two social media networks, however, quickly complied and removed the content on Jan. 14.