Prosecutor asks life sentence in Turkish MIT truck case

Turkish prosecutor demands life sentence for suspects of case over illegal stopping of trucks belonging to top intelligence service

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Updated Jul 28, 2015

The public prosecutor’s office in Turkey’s eastern province of Tarsus asked heavy life sentence for five suspects in Turkish Intelligence Service (MIT) trucks case on Friday.

Four prosecutors and a former gendarmerie commander were charged with “spying” for issuing the search warrants which violates the national security law as the interception involved MIT properties.

The Syria-bound MIT trucks were illegally stopped in Turkey’s southern provinces of Adana and Hatay in January 2014 and were searched by local gendarmerie over claims that they were carrying arms shipments to al Qaeda affiliated groups in Syria.

Adana’s former chief public prosecutor Suleyman Bagriyanik, prosecutors Ozcan Sisman, Aziz Takci and Ahmet Karaca, and Adana’s former provincial gendarmerie commander Ozkan Cokay are the suspects accused of “attempting to overthrow the Turkish government by using force and violence or attempts to destroy the government’s functions totally or partly,” while getting intelligence over the politics and security of the state.

Turkey’s Interior Ministry said the MIT trucks were carrying humanitarian aid to the Syrian Turkmen community which lives under constant regime attacks in war-torn Syria.

Sisman is also accused of ignoring MIT’s warnings over 2013 Reyhanli bomb attack case, declining to detain the suspects.

In May 11 of 2013, two cars exploded in Reyhanli district of southern Hatay province by the Syrian border, killing 52 people and injuring 200. Of the 52 dead, five were Syrian and 47 were Turkish nationals.

The investigation over the MIT trucks case has been launched as part of the “parallel state” probe which led to detention of dozens of police officers and the reassignment of hundreds of others across Turkey.

The “parallel state” is purported to be comprised of a group of bureaucrats embedded in the country's institutions, including the judiciary and the police, which are suspected to be part of the Gulen movement which is led by US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen and his supporters.

TRTWorld and agencies