No court order to monitor or wiretap Turkish PM’s son was issued: Prosecutors
Bilal Erdoğan had testified on corruption allegations as part of a second graft probe. AFP PhotoNo court order to monitor or wiretap Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s son, Bilal Erdoğan, was issued as part of a second graft investigation launched, Istanbul Prosecutor’s Office said Feb. 27.
Bilal Erdoğan had testified on corruption allegations as part of a second graft probe which was sensationally revealed Dec. 25 after the prosecutor in charge made public his removal from the case, denouncing an intervention.
Responding to an application of Bilal Erdoğan’s lawyer, Istanbul Prosecutor’s Office said on Feb. 25 that there was no court order to “physically follow or monitor his communication.”
Corruption claims targeting the prime minister have been revived this week after new tapes allegedly featuring phone conversations between Erdoğan and his son were leaked, causing immediate uproar.
Erdoğan has rejected the allegations, calling the voice recordings a “montage” and slamming prosecutors and police for eavesdropping on him. The opposition, meanwhile, expressed huge indignation over the tapes and the amount of money involved in the alleged conversation, urging the government to resign.
Bilal Erdoğan’s lawyer, Ahmet Özel, had brushed off the accusations directed at his client, stressing that all the claims were based on “abstract allegations and interpretations.”
However, Özel revealed that Bilal Erdoğan had been followed, adding that investigation files contained pictures and phone recordings.
Istanbul prosecutors launched a massive corruption and graft operation on Dec. 17, 2013, that resulted in the resignation of four ministers from Erdoğan’s government.
The Dec. 25 investigation was claimed to have been stopped by the government as it reportedly implicated Bilal Erdoğan.
The government accused the Fethullah Gülen community, known as the Hizmet Movement, of orchestrating the operation and launched a massive struggle to purge its sympathizers from the civil service.