Prosecutor demands extension of arrest of suspects in Gülen’s media links case
ANKARAProsecutors have demanded an extension of the imprisonment of the suspects in the case on the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization’s (FETÖ) media leg, in which former pop singer Atilla Taş and writer Gökçe Fırat Çulhaoğlu are imprisoned along with 12 other suspects.
The case continued with its third hearing at the Istanbul 25th Heavy Criminal Court on Aug. 18.
Following the defense statements of the suspects, the prosecutor argued that the suspects should remain imprisoned on the grounds that they may escape and citing strong evidence of their guilt. The suspects’ lawyers, meanwhile, demanded their immediate release.
The suspects are accused of “being a member of a terrorist organization,” “attempting to dismantle the constitutional order,” and “attempting to overthrow the Turkish government,” with a prosecutor seeking two aggravated life sentences.
The suspects were arrested on Sept. 2, 2016 over charges of managing a Twitter account that spread propaganda on behalf of Gülen.
In a trial on March 31, the court ordered the release of the 13 suspects, but a day later, 12 of the suspects were rearrested on criminal charges filed in a fresh indictment.
Former commander detained
Meanwhile, former fleet commander Gökhan Polat has been detained over charges of Gülen links in the western province of Balıkesir.
The Balıkesir Chief Prosecutor’s Office had issued a detention order on Polat on Aug. 18.
He had been dismissed from the army and detained just after the July 15 coup attempt. However, the Balıkesir Second Heavy Criminal Court had ordered his release in May 2017 for an ongoing case.