Released from Prison in the US, Hakan Atilla will be Deported to Turkey

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  • July 19, 2019
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Sentenced to 32 months in prison as part of the lawsuit filed against Reza Zarrab for having violated the US sanctions against Iran, Halkbank Deputy General Manager Hakan Atilla has been reportedly released from the FCI Schuylkill Prison in Pennsylvania.

Tried and convicted by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, Hakan Atilla will be deported to Turkey after the related formalities are completed.

Speaking to the Voice of America (VoA) Turkish, Halil Uzun, the attorney of Atilla, stated that his client is very excited to return to Turkey and added that the procedures of deportation will take 2 or 3 days.

Indicating that the case of appeal will not be closed and added, “We are anticipating that the court of appeal will also rule for his innocence.”

Process of the Trial

İllüstrasyon: Elizabeth Williams/ AP

  • * Reza Zarrab was arrested on December 21 within the scope of December 17-25 corruption and bribery investigation in Turkey. He was released after 70 days of imprisonment.

    * Zarrab had been taken into custody in Miami city airport while trying to enter the United States and arrested on March 22.

    * On his first hearing on April 27, Zarrab facing up to 95 years of imprisonment denied the accusations of conspiring to evade US sanctions against Iran, money laundering and bank fraud.

    * The other defendant in the trial, former Halkbank Deputy General Director Mehmet Hakan Atilla is being charged with “evading US sanctions on Iran” and “bank fraud”. Arrested on March 28, 2017, Atilla faced up to 50 years in prison and fine of 2 million dollars.

    * In September 2017, then Minister of Economy Zafer Çağlayan, former Halkbank General Director Süleyman Aslan, Halkbank Deputy General Director in Charge of International Operations Levent Balkan and Zarrab’s worker Abdullah Happani were added as defendants.

    * On October 26, Zarrab pleaded guilty and it was announced by the state attorney’s office on November 28.

    * During the deposition, Zarrab admitted that he bribed then Minister of Economy Zafer Çağlayan and explained the business traffic he followed to evade embargo.

    * On January 3, 2018, jury members found Hakan Atilla guilty of five of six charges. Found guilty of five charges of evading US sanctions against Iran, Hakan Atilla was sentenced to 32 months in prison on May 16.

(HA/SD)