US prosecutor drops appeal to extend Turkish banker's sentence
The New York prosecutor’s office has withdrawn an appeal to extend the sentence of a former executive at Turkey’s state-owned lender Halkbank, the Turkish state-run Anadolu Agency said on Dec. 6.
A U.S. court sentenced Hakan Atilla, an executive from Halkbank, to 32 months in prison in May for helping Iran evade U.S. sanctions in a case that has strained already tense ties between NATO allies Ankara and Washington.
Halkbank, which denies any wrongdoing, has since faced potential U.S. fines in relation to the case, which Turkish President Tayyip Erdoğan has condemned as a political attack against his government.
The agency, without citing sources, said the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York had been asked by the court to present details of its appeal by Dec. 6 but that the appeal had later been withdrawn.
“The Government’s Notice of Appeal in the cross-appeal, filed on June 25, 2018, is hereby dismissed with prejudice,” said a statement by U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman, according to the report.
Atilla is currently serving out his sentence in a federal prison in the state of Pennsylvania.