US releases former Turkish banking executive

US releases former Turkish banking executive

ANKARA- Anadolu Agency
US releases former Turkish banking executive

A former Turkish banking executive was released on July 19 from a federal U.S. prison.       

Mehmet Hakan Atilla, 48, the former deputy director-general at Turkish state lender Halkbank, was sentenced in May 2018 in New York for violating U.S. sanctions on Iran.       

However, the judge allowed the time he had served after being arrested a year earlier to be credited in the sentence, and his release today was announced earlier due to good behavior.       

When Atilla was convicted, Turkey blasted the verdict as “a scandalous decision in a scandalous case” and “a conspiracy aimed at complicating Turkey's internal politics and intervening in Turkey's internal affairs."       

Atilla's arrest came after Turkish businessman Reza Sarraf was arrested in 2016 in the U.S. for violating sanctions on Iran.       

Cooperating with prosecutors, he gave testimony against Atilla which was used to convict the banker.      

US, Iran sanctions, Rıza Sarraf,