Report on altered evidence in Balyoz case not prepared by TÜBİTAK: Minister
The experts are responsible for their reports, not the institution, Minister Işık said. AA PhotoTurkish Minister of Science, Industry and Technology Fikri Işık on Jan. 28 said the expert report, which revealed the key evidence in the “Balyoz” (Sledgehammer) trial was fabricated, was not approved by Turkey’s science watchdog (TÜBİTAK), but it was prepared by an expert working at the institution.
The expert was assigned by the court Işık said, underlining that the report was not an institutional one signed by TÜBİTAK but it was prepared by an expert who works at TÜBİTAK.
“The expert delivered his report to the court after his research. It is even forbidden to use TÜBİTAK’s letterhead while delivering the report to the court. [The expert] only uses TÜBİTAK’S research infrastructures and technology. However, it is impossible for TÜBİTAK to have an impression on the report or make any suggestions,” Işık said.
The report was released on Jan. 25, saying the date and time of key files on a hard drive found during searches conducted in December 2010 at the Gölcük Navy Command were modified.
The minister also said the expert report on some 19 CDs released four years ago was also prepared by three experts, not by TÜBİTAK, and added the new probe was over a hard drive, dismissing the relation between two incidents.
The experts are responsible for their reports, not the institution, Işık said.
Twelve people convicted in the Balyoz (Sledgehammer) coup plot case have demanded a retrial on the grounds of the expert report.
The files on the hard drive were one of the foundations of the coup-plot charges in the Balyoz trial indictments. According to Hürriyet, the court had initially rejected a demand from the lawyers requesting the examination of the evidence known as “hard drive number five.”
The report’s findings reportedly state some of the files on the hard drive were transferred by computers over a year after the date and time of the last modification. The report indicates the latest modification to the files was made on May 1, 2008, whereas some files were created after the date of July 28, 2009. Those were transferred from computers with an older system, date and time, according to the experts.
During the Balyoz trial, separate reports from Naval and Air Forces experts also indicated the hard drive was modified, but their assessments were dismissed by the court.