Istanbul court orders CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu to pay 142,000 liras in ‘offshore case’ involving Erdoğan
An Istanbul court has ordered main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to pay immaterial compensation of 142,000 Turkish Liras in a criminal complaint case filed by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Doğan News Agency has reported.
The complaint filed by Erdoğan was the second in a row over offshore accounts that Kılıçdaroğlu alleged the president and his relatives hold in the Isle of Man, a self-governing British Crown dependency in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland.
Kılıçdaroğlu said late last year that the president’s close circle engaged in multi-million dollar traffic through an off-shore company in the tax haven Isle of Man, later providing receipts of the transfers too.
The ruling AKP responded harshly to Kılıçdaroğlu, dismissing the documents as “fake” and saying they should either be either revealed fully to the public or handed to prosecutors for further investigation.
One day after the accusations were made, Erdoğan accused Kılıçdaroğlu of “lying,” saying the five people named “received money because they had sold their existing companies.”
“Money was not sent there,” he said.
Erdoğan also demanded 1.5 million liras in compensation over Kılıçdaroğlu’s statements.
The first court order issued regarding the allegations on June 7 demanded that the CHP leader pay 185,000 Turkish Liras in compensation for “insulting” President Erdoğan.
Not the first probe into Kılıçdaroğlu
The latest “insult” case against the CHP leader is the latest in a series of such criminal investigations into Kılıçdaroğlu, including one launched by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office on Dec. 6.
Erdoğan’s lawyer, Hüseyin Aydın, had at that time posted the letter of complaint on his official Twitter account, quoting a speech Kılıçdaroğlu delivered on Dec. 5.
The letter accused Kılıçdaroğlu of voicing statements “that are part of a perception operation that the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization [FETÖ] has long been carrying out against our president.” The authorities today refer to the network of U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen as “FETÖ,” although it was once a close ally of Erdoğan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
“The statements of the accused and the political party that he leads about our president overlap with the discourse of FETÖ,” the letter added.