Prosecution demands five years in jail for attackers of Turkish fashion designer Şansal
ISTANBULThe Bakırköy Chief Prosecutor’s Office has demanded up to five years in jail for suspects who attacked Turkish fashion designer Barbaros Şansal after he was arrested on charges of “inciting hatred and hostility among the public” at the beginning of January, Doğan News Agency has reported.
Şansal was released late on March 1 following two months in prison.
Şansal was charged with “inciting hatred among the public” in social media posts and video footage in which he “insulted” Turkey in the early hours of Jan. 1.
He was deported from northern Cyprus and arrested in Turkey for the posts, but in its release decision, the court cited “inconsistencies” in the indictment.
He was attacked by 12 people at Atatürk International Airport as he arrived in Istanbul at 10:50 p.m. on Jan. 1, according to the indictment.
Workers who were providing ground services at the airport attacked and insulted Şansal, the indictment stated.
“I saw a crowd as I was getting off the plane. Two police officers got out of the way of the crowded when I was on the second step of the plane’s stairs. The crowd started to attack me. One of the police officer took me from the crowd and got me onto a vehicle. The police officer who got out of the way of the crowd also got in the same vehicle with me,” Şansal said in the indictment, stating that one of the police officers threatened him and made him sign a report saying he was not attacked.
The 12 suspects denied the claim, saying they only approached Şansal with the aim of discussing his social media posts but did not make any physical contact.
A court also sentenced Şansal to six months and 20 days in jail for “insulting the Turkish people and the republic,” but later suspended the sentence. The court also lifted an overseas travel ban and other probation restrictions against Şansal.