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Murat Arslan, the former Chair of the Association of Judges and Prosecutors (YARSAV), which was closed by a Statutory Decree, and a former judge at the Court of Accounts, was sentenced to 10 years in prison in his hearing at the Ankara 25th Heavy Penal Court today (January 18).
Arslan, who has been arrested pending trial since October 2016, was being tried for “being a member of FETÖ (Fethullahist Terrorist Organization, which is held accountable for the attempted coup on July 15, 2016).
In the hearing held today, the attorneys of defendant Arslan requested recusation for the court board and the presiding judge on the ground that “they lost their independence.” The court board rejected the request, stating that “it was aimed at prolonging the process of trial.”
Öykü Didem Aydın, one of the attorneys of Arslan, argued that their requests were not taken into account and the hearing cannot continue until the upper court announces its judgement regarding their objections.
After the court board stated that they would continue the hearing, the attorneys of the defendant said that they resigned from the advocacy of the defendant and left the courtroom.
Stating that “this action of the attorneys also aimed at prolonging the process of trial”, the court board ruled that Murat Arslan shall be sentence to 10 years in prison on charge of “being a member of an armed terrorist organization.” The board also ruled that his arrest shall continue.
Murat Arslan graduated from the Law School of İstanbul University in 1999. After completing his law internship, he started working as a Vice Auditor at the Court of Accounts in 2001.
From March 16, 2011 to July 23, 2016, he was the Chair of the Association of Judges and Prosecutors (YARSAV). The association was closed by the first Statutory Decree published on the Official Gazette on July 23, 2016 after the coup attempt on July 15. Judge Murat Arslan was also dismissed from his post at the Court of Accounts. (AS/SD)