April 26, 2015

Lawyer says prosecutor who blocked release of Karaca, officers cried over gov’t pressure

A lawyer representing journalist Hidayet Karaca, Gütekin Avcı, said the public prosecutor who refused to comply with a court ruling in favor of the release of his client and 75 police officers, cried over government pressure.

Avcı, who is also a former public prosecutor, in a statement to reporters on Sunday evening spoke about a conversation between himself and the public prosecutor who refused to abide by the court's ruling for the release of the suspects.

Avcı said the prosecutor is well aware that what he is doing is unlawful, yet he told Avcı in tears that there is nothing he can do because he will be disbarred if he facilitates the release of the suspects.

“This is the point the county has reached today. Even judges and prosecutors including the honest ones are bowing in tears before the orders of the palace [a reference to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan],” Avcı told reporters.

Although the İstanbul 32nd Court of First Instance on Saturday evening ruled for the release of journalist Hidayet Karaca and 75 imprisoned police officers who have been kept under pre-trial detention for months despite a lack of evidence to support their incarceration, the court's ruling was not enforced by public prosecutors who were on duty on Saturday and Sunday, in a move that is hard to explain in a state of law.

Published on Sunday's Zaman, 26 April 2015, Sunday