The prosecutor Fahrettin Kemal Yerli whom the imprisoned [because of his news and sharings from Twitter] correspondent Ahmet Şık gave the statement due to two reports he wrote two years ago ignored the provision of the Press Act which necessitates “the criminal cases be opened within four months from the publication” and disregarded the decision of non-prosecution given in the investigation related to the news about martyr prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz, Turkish daily Cumhuriyet claimed.
In the news it was stated that Fahrettin Kemal Yerli, one of the Istanbul Press Crimes prosecutors who are carrying out the investigation that Cumhuriyet daily correspondent Ahmet Şık is under arrest for allegedly propagandizing for FETO/PDY and PKK/KCK, yesterday applied to the statement of Şık due to his two reports. According to the newspaper’s claim, the prosecutor ignored Article 26 of the Press Act which requires criminal cases to be filed within four months for crimes committed through printed works as a condition of judgement. In criminal cases opened after this four-month period elapsed only the decision of nonsuit, however, can be made. For this reason, it is clearly against the law to conduct an investigation about Şık into the news of two years ago.
One of the news that was subject of the statement was the one about martyr prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz being taken hostage. Ahmet Şık had made news the interview he made by phone with the DHKP-C militants who had taken hostage the prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz. The prosecutor Fahrettin Kemal Yerli had inquired of Şık this news also on the occasion of having his statement on December 30, 2016, and accused Şık of propagandizing for the DHKP-C organization because of this news. The Istanbul 8th Criminal Judgeship of Peace who had arrested Şık, did not make this news the reason for arrest. Even so, the prosecutor Yerli had Şık’s statement again about the same news, citing the HTS records that he said they entered into the file.
Despite the decision of non-prosecution about the same charge
The subject of another investigation the prosecutor has initiated about Şık is the news titled “Jihadists in arms bargaining”, dated February 14, 2015, about the phone conversations related to the trade of weapons and ammunition found in the case file for the attack of ISIS in Niğde province on March 2014. Şık said in the investigation initiated upon the complaint of Ayhan Altıntaş whose name was mentioned in the news that he was insulted: “I am not acquainted with the plaintiff. I just did my journalistic duty. The elements given in the news are the listening records related to him personally. These are the information that everyone can see in the file. The main person in that file whose conversations were listened with respect to the arms smuggling was Ayhan Orli. Since the plaintiff had had phone conversations with him (Ayhan Orli) his listening records also emerged, and I also called the plaintiff within the scope of the news. But he did not answer. I also called other officials and tried to get verified the news and to recognize the right to respond to those who were involved in the news. I do not think I’ve committed any crime. Moreover, the plaintiff hid the truth in a way by not adding to the petition his own speeches about the listening records.”
An investigation against Şık had been launched in Press Crimes Prosecutor’s Office two years ago, too, due to his news about martyr prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz. In the investigation launched by the prosecutor Umut Tepe in April 2015, a non-prosecution decision was given about Şık on 24th July 2015. Prosecutor Tepe had stated that the news was not written with the intention of praising the crime and guilty. Şık said in his statement due to his same news he gave yesterday to the prosecutor Yerli, “My interview with the actors and all other phone calls are related to the journalistic activity. I do not think and accept these are crimes. An investigation was conducted on similar charges related to the said interview, and a decision of non-prosecution was given.” Şık and his lawyer requested that this decision of non-prosecution be brought to the file. When the prosecutor said that he would fulfill this request later, Şık’s lawyer fetched the decision of non-prosecution from the prosecutor’s office pen in the next room while the statement continues and presented it to the file because the statement process was related to this non-prosecution decision. Because of the decision of non-prosecution in the same subject and due to the expiration of the legal filing deadlines, the prosecutor’s office was requested to apply for the judgeship and to sue for release. However, the prosecutor’s office did not take any action in this direction, so Şık was sent back to Silivri after his statement.Şeref Güçlü