Legal flaw allows night clubs and casinos across Turkey to open as 'political parties'

Legal flaw allows night clubs and casinos across Turkey to open as 'political parties'

Some casinos and night clubs have been opened as “political parties,” for evasion of tax payment and audits, a letter penned to the Parliament by a chief prosecutor has revealed.

After filing a petition to the Internal Affairs Ministry with the names of 30 people for the establishment of a new political party, the entertainment business owners have appeared to be able to manage night halls and casinos under the name of a political party, without being subject of any kind of auditing from authorities.

In the letter he wrote, the chief prosecutor of the Supreme Court of Appeals, Hasan Erbil, asked the Parliament to amend a gap in the Law on Political Parties that rules out the possibility of shutting down the parties for violating the commercial activity ban.

Erbil asked the Parliament to add this regulation to the 67th clause of the Political Parties Law: “Authorities of political parties that are engaged in commercial activities violating the Constitution or this law will be fined with an administrative penalty for not less than 500 days and the business earning underserved income will be shut down.”

As the latest of a number of instances, the Internal Affairs Ministry has received petitions for the start-up of four political parties in the southeastern province of Gaziantep, by 30 people for each party.

These people operated casinos and night clubs in the city illegally and without paying anything to the state.

The police wanted to raid these places, after realizing these were uncontrolled and illegal entertainment venues but the owners stopped the police from taking any action by claiming they were political parties.

The police informed the Supreme Court of Appeals’ prosecutors, but due to flaws in the law, they couldn’t take action for the closure of the businesses.