Hürriyet files criminal complaints against AKP lawmaker, tabloid

Hürriyet files criminal complaints against AKP lawmaker, tabloid

Hürriyet files criminal complaints against AKP lawmaker, tabloid

DHA photo

Hürriyet Editor-in-Chief Sedat Ergin and columnist Ahmet Hakan filed a criminal complaint Sept. 17 against Justice and Development Party (AKP) lawmaker Adnan Boynukalın on charges of making insults, issuing threats and praising crime and criminals.

Also on Sept. 17 , Doğan Holding Honorary Chairman Aydın Doğan, Hürriyet, Doğan News Agency (DHA) and Doruk Television and Radio Broadcasting filed criminal complaints against a tabloid and its executives on the grounds of slander and defamation.

In the complaint, the complainants demanded Ethem Sancak, owner of the tabloid Güneş; its editor-in-chief, Turgay Güler; and editor Mustafa Dolu face trial for a widely derided front-page story in the pro-government daily. 

A prosecutor launched an investigation into the Doğan Media Group for “terrorist propaganda” on Sept. 15 based on the tabloid’s front page. 

Some of the claims in the Güneş story had already been declared unfounded by the Turkish judiciary, which had refused to launch a case. Deputy Chief Prosecutor İdris Kurt, however, took Güneş’s allegations seriously and initiated the probe.  

Boynukalın, meanwhile, delivered a controversial speech addressing a group that attacked Hürriyet’s headquarters in Istanbul on Sept. 6, which was captured on video.

In the speech, he vowed to “make Recep Tayyip Erdoğan the president” with extended powers – regardless of the result of the Nov. 1 election, while describing media organizations as “terrorists.” 

Another piece of footage also emerged earlier this week, in which he can be heard threatening Hürriyet journalists and expressing his regret that they “never beat them in the past.”

“They had never had a beating before. Our mistake was that we never beat them in the past. If we had beaten them...” Boynukalın said in the video, mocking Ergin and Hakan for their reactions as approximately 200 assailants smashed the newspaper building’s front windows with stones and clubs. 

He also revealed in the video that he mulled waiting for Hakan in front of his house to confront him.