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Former police chief convicted to 1,5 years in jail over assault on Gezi victim

After being charged with ordering an assault, a former police chief has been sentenced to a year and six months in jail after a university student died during an anti-government protest in Eskisehir, a Central Anatolian province.

A news report by T24 on Wednesday said Mustafa Aygun, the vice chief of the Eskisehir Police Department, was found guilty for misconduct by giving an unlawful order which ultimately resulted in the murder of Ali Ismail Korkmaz who participated in the Gezi protests against the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP).

The Gezi protests began in 2013 as a bid to stop the proposed demolition of the Gezi Park by then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and turned into a revolt due to his uncompromising stance and a heavy-handed police crackdown on protesters, sparking countrywide demonstrations.

Erdogan is now Turkey’s President. Eight people died, with at least four of the deaths attributed to police violence, according to the Turkish Doctors’ Organization. Some 8,000 people were injured.

Korkmaz, 19, was beaten while he was running away from police who had used teargas and died on July 10, 2013. He was in a coma for 38 days after he was fatally allegedly beaten by a group of police officers and civilian supporters of AKP.

Addressing the Eskisehir 6th Criminal Court of First Instance in its final hearing, the former officer rejected the accusations, saying: “I did not have any involvement in the incident. I request my acquittal.”

The hearing was attended by a group that included Korkmaz’s relatives. Previously, police officers Mevlut Saldogan and Yalcin Akbulut were both convicted and sentenced to 10 years and 10 months in jail for the attack on Korkmaz.

Another police officer, Huseyin Engin, was sentenced to 7 months and 15 days in prison and baker Ebubekir Harlar was incarcerated to 6 years and 8 months in jail.

In March, Aygun, who was responsible chief for the intelligence desk in Eskisehir, was convicted of being a member of the Gulen movement, violating the confidentiality of communication, recording confidential communication, and storing personal information illegally and was sentenced to 105 years in total.

The Erdogan regime is steadfast in accusing self-exiled US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who led the Gulen movement, of masterminding the July 2016 failed coup, deeming the movement a terror organization.

The self-exiled cleric and his followers deny any involvement in the coup and terror activities.

In the aftermath of the 2016 coup attempt, Erdogan launched a crackdown on real and alleged members of the movement under the pretext of an anti-coup fight.

As a result, nearly 80,000 people have been detained or arrested while a whopping number of more than 511,000 people have been prosecuted due to alleged affiliation with the Gulen group, the Interior Ministry said.

Death of Gezi Park victim commemorated six years on

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