Name of Turkey's top religious body used in ‘Islamic products’ scam
Turkish police have detained the members of a criminal gang who made more than 1 million Turkish Liras by claiming that they were selling Islamic products like rose-scented beads on behalf of Turkey’s top religious body.
Demirören News Agency reported Nov. 28 that the Istanbul Security Directorate’s cyber crime units tracked the gang members, including a popular Islamic song singer, for eight months before the police raids were launched last week.
The group, allegedly led by a suspect identified only as Adnan S., has been accused of setting up a call center in Istanbul to fraud more than 30,000 people in a bid to “exploit peoples’ religious feelings.”
According to Turkish officials, the victims were persuaded to buy overpriced Islamic products, including books and objects, by misleadingly suggesting that the calls were made by Turkey’s top religious body, Diyanet.
The gang’s alleged leader was filmed while celebrating his birthday on a luxurious yacht in Istanbul last month, while other members spent some of the victims’ money in entertainment centers abroad.
The court in Istanbul’s Bakırköy district arrested four of the 31 detained suspects, including Adnan S.