Muharrem Büyüktürk, the teacher who was sentenced to a landmark 508 years of prison in a child abuse case in the central Karaman province, was sentenced to an additional 84 years in a separate case of child abuse on Monday.
The second case was launched as Büyüktürk had six of the 10 abused children transferred to Ereğli district of the adjacent Konya province from Karaman, where he continued abusing them along with at least one child from Ereğli.
The court in Ereğli ruled for the sentencing of Büyüktürk twice for 84 years on sexual abuse for children and restriction of freedom offenses. The sentences were aggravated as Büyüktürk committed the offenses as a teacher. Just like the case in Karaman, Büyüktürk plead not guilty.
Büyüktürk was previously sentenced to five life terms on April 20 for sexually abusing 10 school boys as young as 12 in the case that sent shockwaves across Turkey and prompted a defamation campaign against a prominent charity to which the suspect was allegedly linked.
The court issued separate imprisonment terms for each of the victims and sentenced him to 100 years for the first victim, 88 years for the second one, 104 years for the third one, 62 years for the fourth one, and 68 years for the fifth one.
The court handed down Büyüktürk's prison sentence over offenses including sexual abuse of children, restriction of freedom, felonious injury and displaying indecent footage to children.
The abuse took place in homes belonging to local Karaman İmam Hatip Schools Alumni Association (KAİMDER) and Ensar Foundation, a renowned nationwide charity known for providing aid to students across Turkey for housing and scholarships.
Along with the scale of the abuse, the case has transformed into a highly political one due to the conservative profile of these NGO's, which insist that this incident was an individual case, and the community behind these NGO's should not be defamed as a whole. This opinion has also been repeatedly voiced by government officials.
However, the opposition and various rights groups accuse these NGO's and the government of systematically ignoring the abuse that took place in illegally established houses that were supported by local authorities. It has also been claimed that the scale of the abuse in Karaman may have reached up to 45 children, and there are thousands of such houses in Turkey.
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