Suspects deny claims in controversial case

Suspects deny claims in controversial case

ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
Suspects deny claims in controversial case

Nedim Şener. AP photo

During the 10th hearing of the Oda TV case, suspect İklim Kaleli Bayraktar, who is currently standing trial without arrest, denied all the charges leveled against her in an Istanbul court Jan. 26.

Prior to Bayraktar’s plea, the chief justice ordered the other 12 suspects to leave the courtroom due to his personal observation that Bayraktar was feeling oppressed by the other suspects’ presence.

Bayraktar started crying when the judge asked if she was fine. The other suspects’ lawyers objected to this ruling, but the court chose to stick to its decision.

“Blackmail, threats and plotting against Deniz Baykal, [the former leader of the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP)…] I do not accept any of them. Neither [case suspect] Soner Yalçın nor anyone else ever directed me to contact Baykal. I was accused of being a spy. Imagine a spy who could not afford to hire a lawyer for months when she was put on trial…” Bayraktar said.

Bayraktar also said she was backed by no one else other than her family. “I am not a defendant in this case but a victim.”

Meanwhile, imprisoned journalist Müyesser Yıldız Uğur, another case suspect, accused Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of “attempting to influence a fair trial” and requested that the court file charges against him.

Uğur reiterated Erdoğan’s Jan. 25 comments regarding the case of the imprisoned journalists during a reception marking the 25th anniversary of the daily Zaman’s establishment.

Erdoğan had said that the jailed journalists included a person who had killed a policeman and mentioned news stories that were used as evidence in a failed judicial bid in 2008 to have his AKP outlawed.