Zarrab will serve time in four different prisons during his transfer to New York

Zarrab will serve time in four different prisons during his transfer to New York

Razi Canikligil – NEW YORK
Zarrab will serve time in four different prisons during his transfer to New York Reza Zarrab, an Iranian-born Turkish businessman who was arrested in Miami on March 19 over Iran-related sanction charges, will serve time in four different prisons during his transfer from Miami to New York. He will be transferred via bus, U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York’s Chief Public Information Officer James Margolin stated.  

“Because there will be prisoners who will be transferred to different prisons in other states, Zarrab will serve time in different prisons for at least four nights during his transfer,” Margolin told daily Hürriyet in Common Cause’s, a non-governmental organization, meeting at the University Club in New York on April 13. 

Stating that Zarrab’s transfer to New York could take two more weeks, Margolin added that the U.S. Federal Security unit will carry out the transfer. Zarrab, whose trial is expected to start in September at the earliest, will appear in court as soon as he arrives in New York where his lawyers can demand a free trial with bail, according to Margolin. 

Meanwhile, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who garnered fame in Turkey for launching a probe against Zarrab, stressed that no one is above the law. 

 “This is the hope of not only the New Yorkers or the Americans, but the hope of everyone around the world, in every continent, from Iceland to India and from Brazil to Turkey,” Bharara added. 

Stating that the number of his Twitter followers increased immensely, Bharara claimed that most of his followers are from Turkey and are in search of justice and “clean governance.” 

“The day we arrested him, I had 8,100 followers on Twitter. In a couple of days it surpassed 270,000. Before the dinner tonight it reached 298,000 and nearly all of them are Turkish. Hundreds of people from a country that I’ve never been to, who never heard my name before or can hardly pronounce it, who can’t speak English and are writing messages in Turkish are in a search of hope on clean governance. This is a clear sign that a yearning for governances that holds law above all and are honest and transparent exists for all of us.”

Speaking to Turkish journalists after his speech in the dinner, Bharara emphasized that the only thing his Turkish followers care about is justice; in fact, the first Turkish word he learned was “justice.” 

Answering questions about the several Turkish media outlets’ attempt to correlate him with the Gezi Park protests, which began in late May 2013 as an effort to stop bulldozers from razing central Istanbul’s Gezi Park, Bharara rejected the allegations.

“I’ve never been to Turkey. Contrary to what some of the media outlets claim, which are perhaps not free, I’ve never been to Turkey; not as a tourist, a protester or an organizer of a protest or a resistance. But I’d like to visit Turkey one day.”

Zarrab was arrested in the U.S. last month on charges that he conspired to conduct hundreds of millions of dollars in financial transactions for the Iranian government or other entities to evade U.S. sanctions. He is widely known in Turkey, as his name was embroiled in the Dec. 17-21, 2013 graft operations that involved four former Justice and Development Party (AKP) ministers and other state officials.