Tag Archives: Arrested Lawyers

Turkey: Court of Appeals Upholds 159-Year Prison Term for Contemporary Lawyers’ Association Members

October 16, 2019

The court has rejected all the objections on the merits, making the final judgment for six lawyers. The arrest of the six lawyers will continue.

İstanbul Regional Court of Justice 2nd Penal Chamber (court of appeals) has announced its decision in the case where lawyers from the Contemporary Lawyers’ Association (ÇHD) were given a 159-year prison term in total.

All objections have been rejected on the merits.

This is the final judgment for six lawyers who were sentenced to less than five years in prison, therefore they will not be able to appeal the verdict.

Twelve lawyers who were sentenced to more than five years in prison can appeal the decision at the Court of Cassation.

Reason for the refusal: Court’s opinion and assessment

The court of appeals, in its verdict dated October 8, explained the reason for refusing the objections as follows:

“According to defendants’ statements of defense, the proceedings, the evidence collected and displayed at the court, the opinion and assessment of the court in accordance with the results of the investigation, the content of the case file, it has been understood that there is no procedural or meritorious unlawfulness in the court’s decision, there is no deficiency in the evidence and proceedings that the actions are considered correct and in accordance with the type of crime that is stated in the law, the sentence is implemented in the legal context…”

http://bianet.org/english/law/214528-court-of-appeals-upholds-159-year-prison-term-for-contemporary-lawyers-association-members

Istanbul Regional Appeal Court upheld 159 years prison term given to 18 lawyers

https://bianet.org/1/13/214493-istinaf-chd-davasinda-159-yillik-hapis-cezasini-onadi (TURKCE)

https://gazetekarinca.com/2019/10/istinaf-chd-ve-hhbli-avukatlara-verilen-hapis-cezasini-onadi/ (TURKCE)

https://ilerihaber.org/icerik/chd-davasinda-istinaf-basvurusu-reddedildi-104932.html (TURKCE)

Turkey: Report: There still 143 lawyers in Turkish prisons

September 17, 2019

In response to a parliamentary question of Mr Sezgin Tanrikulu, the Turkish Ministry of Justice announced the number of lawyers held in prison by years. According to the Ministry of Justice the number of lawyers remanded in pretrial detention by years as following: 354, 487, 169 and 143, respectively in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.

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Since 2016’s coup attempt, there has been a relentless campaign of arrests which has targeted lawyers across Turkey. In 77 of Turkey’s 81 provinces, lawyers have beendetained, prosecuted and convicted due to alleged terror-linked offenses. As of today, more than 1500 lawyers have been prosecuted and 599 lawyers arrested. So far, 321 lawyers have been sentenced to 2022 years in prison on the grounds of membership of an armed terrorism organization or of spreading terrorist propaganda.

Lawyers who were released after a certain time of pretrial detention will return to prison if their pending appeals dismissed.

Report: There still 143 lawyers in Turkish prisons

Abuse of the Anti-Terrorism Provision by Turkey is steadily increasing

https://ahvalnews.com/arrested-lawyers/turkey-has-sentenced-321-lawyers-2000-years-jail-2016-report

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/10/turkey-mass-prosecution-lawyers

18 Lawyers sentenced to long prison terms

https://ahvalnews.com/selahattin-demirtas/selahattin-demirtas-release-order-upon-release-order-still-jail

https://www.euronews.com/2019/09/11/lawyers-seek-kurdish-politician-demirtas-release-from-turkish-prison-source

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/turkey/turkeyex-top-judiciary-official-gets-15-year-jail-term/1586483

Arbitrary Detention of Lawyers and Defenders in China, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Cameroon | Oral Statement to the 42nd Session of the UN Human Rights Council

http://www.milliyet.com.tr/gundem/bylock-kullanan-avukata-hapis-6041404 (TURKCE)

LATEST REPORT | MASS PROSECUTION OF LAWYERS IN TURKEY

Turkey: Report: Key evidence was spoliated in an investigation relating the murder of Tahir Elçi

September 11, 2019

Image may contain: 1 person, suit and text

Turkish journalist Cevheri Guven reports that the most crucial evidence that might lead to the discovery of the perpetrator of the assassination of Tahir Elci was removed from the investigation file and spoliated in the Turkish Institution of Forensic Medicine. According to a bombshell news story published in Boldmedya spoliation of the evidence was carried out at the order of the President of the Institution of Forensic Medicine.


THE EVIDENCE THAT MAY DISCOVER THE MURDERER OF TAHIR ELCI WAS DESTROYED.

The forensic doctor Mehtap Altuğ, in her official statement, stated that the most crucial evidence for the investigation in relation to the assassination of Tahir Elçi was spoliated at the order of the President of the Institution of Forensic Medicine.

It was revealed that the most crucial evidence that might lead to the discovery of the perpetrator of the assassination of Tahir Elci was removed from the investigation file in the Institution of Forensic Medicine. Mehtap Altug, who is a forensic geneticist in the Istanbul Forensic Institution, explained the spoliation of evidence in detail during an investigation that was carried out by the Istanbul / Bakirkoy Prosecution Office. However, the issue was hushed up.

The President of the Diyarbakir Bar Association, Tahir Elçi, was shot to death on 28th November, 2015, in Diyarbakir. Despite the four years that have passed since then, the gun that fired the bullet which killed Mr Elçi has not been identified.

Report: Key evidence was spoliated in an investigation relating the murder of Tahir Elçi

The Evidence That May Discover The Murderer Of Tahir Elçi Was Destroyed

http://bianet.org/english/human-rights/212972-lawyer-can-tombul-released

Can Tombul released from pre-trial detention

https://ahvalnews.com/turkish-judiciary/turkeys-akp-set-weaken-largest-bar-associations-following-ceremony-boycott

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tahir_El%C3%A7i

http://bianet.org/bianet/insan-haklari/213041-tahir-elci-sorusturmasinda-delil-karartildi-mi (TURKCE)

https://www.gazeteduvar.com.tr/gundem/2019/09/11/tahir-elci-cinayetinde-delil-karartma-iddiasi/ (TURKCE)

https://www.birgun.net/haber/adli-tip-kurumu-calisani-tahir-elci-cinayetinde-delil-karartildi-268114 (TURKCE)

https://www.evrensel.net/haber/386760/adli-tip-tahir-elci-cinayetine-iliskin-delilleri-karartiyor-mu (TURKCE)

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tahir_El%C3%A7i (FRANCAIS)

Turkey/Germany: Exiled Turkish lawyers hold “alternative” judicial ceremony in Berlin

September 5, 2019

Exiled Turkish lawyers hold “alternative” judicial ceremony in Berlin

A group of Turkish lawyers who fled an ongoing purge in Turkey, has come together in Berlin, Germany, to mark the opening of the new judicial year, the Kronos news portal reported.

According to the report, the event was held in support of some 50 bar associations in Turkey that boycotted the opening ceremony of the new judicial year at the President Erdogan’s presidential palace in Ankara, citing the independence of judiciary from executive power.

The independence of the Turkish judiciary came further into question when the new judicial year opening ceremony held at President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s palace in September 2016 turned into a display of judicial support for Erdoğan.

During the ceremony prosecutors and judges stood up and applauded Erdoğan when he entered the hall and when he finished his address.

Erdoğan’s government is accused of taking the judiciary under its absolute control and punishing dissenting judicial members either by expelling or arresting them.

Exiled Turkish lawyers hold “alternative” judicial ceremony in Berlin

https://www.coe.int/en/web/commissioner/-/the-independence-of-judges-and-the-judiciary-under-threat

Turkish Bar Associations boycott new judicial year opening at presidential palace (updated)

New Report: Mass Prosecution of Lawyers in Turkey

https://ahvalnews.com/arrested-lawyers/turkey-has-sentenced-321-lawyers-2000-years-jail-2016-report

Turkey has prosecuted some 1,500 lawyers, arrested 599 since failed coup: report

LATEST REPORT | MASS PROSECUTION OF LAWYERS IN TURKEY

Turkey: New Report: Mass Prosecution of Lawyers in Turkey

September 1, 2019

As 2019 Judicial Year starts on 1st of September tomorrow in Turkey. The Arrested Lawyers Initiative published a new report named Mass Prosecution of Lawyers in Turkey.

According to report, since 2016’s coup attempt, there has been a relentless campaign of arrests which has targeted fellow lawyers across the country. In 77 of Turkey’s 81 provinces, lawyers have been detained, prosecuted and convicted due to alleged terror-linked offenses. As of 1 September 2019, more than 1500 lawyers have been prosecuted and 599 lawyers arrested. So far, 321 lawyers have been sentenced to 2022 years in prison on the grounds of membership of an armed terrorism organization or of spreading terrorist propaganda.

New Report: Mass Prosecution of Lawyers in Turkey

https://ahvalnews.com/arrested-lawyers/turkey-has-sentenced-321-lawyers-2000-years-jail-2016-report

Turkey has prosecuted some 1,500 lawyers, arrested 599 since failed coup: report

https://www.dailysabah.com/investigations/2019/09/02/turkish-courts-back-to-work-with-backlog-of-coup-trials

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/18/un-urged-to-act-over-purge-of-turkeys-lawyers-by-erdogan

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/10/turkey-mass-prosecution-lawyers

https://ahvalnews.com/turkish-judiciary/turkeys-erdogan-hosts-ceremony-launch-judicial-year-lawyers-boycott

https://www.hrw.org/fr/news/2019/04/10/turquie-poursuites-judiciaires-massives-contre-des-avocats (FRANCAIS)

Turkey: Appeal Court upheld the sentence given to Gulen’s lawyer

August 5, 2019

Ankara Regional Appeal court upheld the sentence given to Gulen’s lawyer, Nurullah Albayrak who is the member of the Ankara Bar Association.

The conviction was based on a petition which Nurullah Albayrak had filed with the General Directorate of Security and some provincial security directorates in July 2014. In the same petition which was dated  9 July 2014 Nurullah Albayrak reportedly urged the law enforcement officers not to comply with illegal orders which could eventually result in their criminal liability, and urged them to only comply with the law.

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Upon Albayrak’s petition, an indictment dated 17 September 2015 issued against him with the charge of professional misconduct and he was convicted by Ankara 9th Heavy Penal Court on 29 September 2016 in absentia.

Ankara Regional Appeal court, which had considered the appeal, last week upheld the two-year prison term given by the Ankara 9th Heavy Penal Court. In a separate case, life imprisonment is being sought for Albayrak for leading of an armed terrorist organization.

Since the coup attempt of 2016, 311 Turkish lawyers have been convicted to a total of 1967 years in prison under Turkey’s Anti-Terror Legislation.

Appeal Court upheld the sentence given to Gulen’s lawyer

Turkey: International law obligations to release lawyer Nurullah Albayrak | Letter

http://www.kontrgerilla.com/mansetgoster.asp?haber_no=9528#.XUk4t28zbIU (TURKCE)

Turkey: Free expression organizations highlight unprecedented crackdown on freedom of expression in report to UN

August 5, 2019

More than three years since Turkey’s 2016 failed coup and one year after its state of emergency was lifted, the government continues its relentless and pervasive crackdown on civic space, media freedom and dissenting voices.

Turkey’s human rights record will come under review by the UN Human Rights Council during the Universal Period Review (UPR) mechanism in January 2020. Ahead of the review, ARTICLE 19, P24, PEN International, English PEN, Reporters Without Borders (RSF), International Press Institute (IPI), Freemuse, European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF), IFEX and Norwegian PEN have made a submission to the UPR.

“This report charts the extraordinarily rapid decline in the rule of law and freedom of expression in Turkey over the last four years. The Turkish authorities have dismantled the independence of the judiciary and more journalists have been jailed than anywhere else in the world,” Sarah Clarke. “We urge UN member states to take much stronger action in holding Turkey to account for these violations.”

“The Turkish media is pinning its hopes on international mechanisms and the United Nations Human Rights Council to end its persecution,” IPI Director of Advocacy Ravi R. Prasad said. “This report not only highlights the precarious situation in Turkey, but also makes suggestions to remedy the situation.”

Amongst the report’s key recommendations are to urge Turkey to restore the rule of law and impendence of the judiciary, to release all jailed journalists and to drop the hundreds of baseless charges against journalists, artists, civil society actors and academics.

Turkey: Free expression organizations highlight unprecedented crackdown on freedom of expression in report to UN

https://rsf.org/en/news/turkey-leading-coalition-free-expression-organisations-highlight-unprecedented-crackdown-freedom

International Coalition consists of Bar Associations and NGOs made submission on rights violations in Turkey

http://www.barhumanrights.org.uk/bhrc-joins-international-coalition-of-legal-organisations-raising-concern-for-turkeys-lawyers-and-judges/

Joint UPR submission Turkey

SCF’s submission for the United Nations Universal Periodic Review of Turkey

Turkey: ICJ Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR)

UPR of Turkey: Joint Stakeholder Submission to the UN Human Rights Council

https://www.article19.org/resources/turkey-upr-submission-on-threats-to-freedom-of-expression/

https://www.scholarsatrisk.org/2019/07/sar-calls-for-action-to-counter-mass-targeting-of-higher-education-communities-in-turkey/.

Turkey: workshop on the use of the UN Universal Periodic Review

https://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/UPR/Pages/TRindex.aspx

http://www.un.org.tr/humanrights/en/universal-periodic-review-3rd-cycle

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/18/un-urged-to-act-over-purge-of-turkeys-lawyers-by-erdogan

https://ahvalnews.com/torture/lawyers-says-torture-rise-turkey-2016-coup-plot

Turkey: Joint submission by the ALI, the ODF and the HRD on abuse of Anti-Terror Law and criminalization of legitimate exercise of the freedom of expression

July 18, 2019

A coalition consists of the Arrested Lawyers Initiative, the Open Dialogue Foundation and the Human Rights Defenders e.V. made a joint submission titled ‘ARBITRARY APPLICATION OF ANTI-TERRORISM LAWS AND CRIMINALIZATION OF USING AN I-MESSAGE APPLICATION (BYLOCK)‘ to the United Nations Human Rights Council for Turkey’s UPR session.

The Submission concluded that: 

  1. Criminalization of the use of ByLock constitutes the retroactive punishment because a) it is not foreseeable under Turkish laws, b) it is unprecedented in Turkish case-law, c) at the time of such alleged use it was not the object of sufficiently precise, valid law to which a sufficiently certain sanction was attached,
  2. The use of ByLock does not prove criminal guilt.23 Using an electronic communication software which was offered to public use via the most visited and famous online platform (i.e Apple and Google Play stores) is legitimate exercise of fundamental rights, namely the freedom of expression and the freedom of [confidential] communication, not a crime. Freedom of expression includes the right to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, including all forms of electronic and internet-based modes of expression,
  3. A conviction may be based on correspondence which show a crime has been committed provided that such correspondences have been legally acquired and in any case it is supported with other concrete evidence,
  4. An arrest or detention that lacks any legal basis—in violation of the principle of legality—is arbitrary. Retroactive criminal punishment by detention amounts to arbitrary detention. Arrest or detention as punishment for the legitimate exercise of the rights as guaranteed by the ICCPR, such as freedom of expression, is arbitrary,

Joint submission by the ALI, the ODF and the HRD on abuse of Anti-Terror Law and criminalization of legitimate exercise of the freedom of expression

International Coalition consists of Bar Associations and NGOs made submission on rights violations in Turkey

The Arrested Lawyers made submission to the United Nations on ongoing crackdown against lawyers in Turkey

https://ahvalnews.com/purges/international-group-urges-un-action-over-purge-turkish-legal-professionals

SCF’s submission to the United Nations Universal Periodic Review of Turkey

State of emergency measures still haunt Turkey on 3rd anniversary of failed coup

http://camerepenali.it/cat/10046/un_altro_processo_in_turchia_contro_degli_avvocati_.html (ITALIANO)

https://arrestedlawyers.org/

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Turkey: Trial of Amnesty lawyer Taner Kiliç et al adjourned to October 9th

July 16, 2019

https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2019/07/turkey-three-year-anniversary-coup.html

Turkey: ICJ Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR)

Turkey : IBAHRI and ICJ observe criminal trial on “Gezi Park” protests

https://ilerihaber.org/icerik/insan-haklari-savunucularinin-yargilandigi-dava-ertelendi-100637.html (TURKCE)

http://www.haberdar.com/gundem/buyukada-davasinda-savci-degisti-durusma-ertelendi-h142111.html (TURKCE)

https://www.tagesspiegel.de/politik/erdogan-doch-nicht-so-allmaechtig-prozesse-gegen-deniz-yuecel-und-peter-steudtner-vertagt/24596904.html (DEUTSCH)

#TanerKiliç

#HakSavunucularınaÖzgürlük

#FreeRightsDefenders

https://arrestedlawyers.org/

Turkey/The Netherlands: Event at Consulate in honor of L4L Award for Selçuk Kozağaçlı

July 15, 2019

Event at Consulate in honor of L4L Award for Selçuk Kozağaçlı

On 10 July 2019 the Dutch consulate in Istanbul hosted a special event in honor of the Lawyers for Lawyers Award given to lawyerSelçuk Kozağaçlı from Turkey. Kozağaçlı, who is currently serving a long prison sentence in Turkey, has accepted the award under the condition that it is dedicated to all lawyers and others who are in prison as a consequence of their work to protect the rule of law and human rights.

 

The event at the consulate was opened by consul-general Bart van Bolhuis, who emphasized that the consulate supports, and will keep on supporting, lawyers in Turkey who are under pressure, prosecuted and detained because of their human rights work. L4L-president Irma van den Berg handed over the award to mr. Kozağaçlı’s colleague and wife, Betül Vangölü Kozağaçlı applauding the dedication and courage of mr. Kozağaçlı and his colleagues. Mrs. Vangölü underlined that it is the responsibility of every lawyer to protect the rule of law and human rights, even if this is at personal risk.

The event was attended by the president of the Bar Association of Istanbul, mr. Mehmet Durakoğlu, other lawyers, and international observers from Greece, Italy, Belgium and Switzerland. The international observers were in Istanbul to attend the hearing in the so-called CHD-1 case, in which both Selçuk Kozağaçlı and Betül Vangölü Kozağaçlı stand trial.

The award ceremony itself took place on 23 May 2019, in the presence of Dutch Minister of Justice Ferdinand Grapperhaus, and more than 200 people including lawyers from the Netherlands and abroad. Serife Ceren Uysal received the award on behalf of mr. Kozağaçlı, as he was absent due to his prison sentence.

https://lawyersforlawyers.org/en/event-at-consulate-in-honor-of-l4l-award-for-selcuk-kozagacli/

Selçuk Kozağaçlı to receive L4L Award 2019

L4L observed hearing in the CHD-1 trial

https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2019/07/turkey-three-year-anniversary-coup.html

Turkey: ICJ Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR)

Turkey : IBAHRI and ICJ observe criminal trial on “Gezi Park” protests

https://t24.com.tr/haber/selcuk-kozagacli-yargilandigim-davanin-evraklari-bana-gosterilmiyor,829986 (TURKCE)

https://fr.euronews.com/2019/07/15/les-revelations-d-un-ancien-juge-limoge-en-turquie (FRANCAIS)