Turkish police department opens probe into missed surveillance data
During this investigation, the Police Intelligence office discovered a number of clues about the erasing of data, as well as the copying of some archive information. DHA photoThe police department has kicked-off an investigation into the former actions of its intelligence service, but has been unable to access some of the wiretapping and surveillance records, according to a report in daily Milliyet on Sept. 19.
The department has been undergoing a personnel reshuffle and institutional restructuring since Engin Dinç, who was reportedly involved in employing a suspect in the Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink murder case as an intelligence provider, became head of the Police Intelligence office in April.
Within the transition operations, the new department head has also ordered a wide-scale probe into operations conducted under his predecessor, Ömer Altınparmak.
During this investigation, the Police Intelligence office discovered a number of clues about the erasing of data, as well as the copying of some archive information.
In particular, some processes conducted related to technical wiretapping and surveillance activities could not be reached, Milliyet reported.
Evidence of data manipulation has been sent to the Internal Affairs Ministry and the General Police Director Mehmet Kılıçlar.
The higher management has ordered a re-examination of the obtained data by inspectors, who will look to see whether there are any elements of crimes having been committed among former activities, and decide on the punishment if necessary.
Two chief police inspectors began to examine the operation records 10 days ago at the Police Intelligence Department headquarters in Ankara.
At the first stage of investigations, inspectors demanded some of the missing records from the Turkey’s Directorate of Telecommunication (TİB), which is the sole authority over all of the wiretapping and surveillance activities of security units. However the TİB is reported to have given a negative response to the request.
Following Dinç’s taking over of the post in April, most of the branch chiefs were replaced in May, without waiting for the appointment season to come. As part of the summer appointments, lower ranking officials, as well as a number of critically positioned personnel, were also relocated.
These displaced personnel now appear to be resorting to judicial measures, claiming that they were unseated “unlawfully.” Some of the intelligence managers have already earned the right to be reappointed within 30 days, after a ruling for the suspension of the execution of replacement decision. Suspension decisions are still subject to the finalization of a number of legal procedures.