Prosecutors wrapped up an indictment yesterday on Ergenekon, a notorious trial involving hundreds imprisoned on apparent false charges and evidence fabricated by Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ). Eight former judges and prosecutors face life sentences for abuse of duty, falsifying official documents and destroying evidence, while a separate indictment is expected to be drafted for suspects with alleged links to the terrorist group.
Though the majority of suspects have been detained, former Judge Sedat Sami Haşıloğlu remains at large.
"Ergenekon" was the alleged name of a secretive terrorist group in a sham case filed by FETÖ-linked prosecutors. The indictment comes a few weeks after a retrial began for Ergenekon defendants. The alleged group was "uncovered" in 2007 when weapons hidden in a house in Istanbul's Ümraniye district were discovered to be linked to the terrorist group.
What followed was a barrage of detentions that included everyone from veteran politician Doğu Perinçek to former army Chief İlker Başbuğ, journalists Tuncay Özkan and Mustafa Balbay and other renowned figures. Defendants were held in custody for years before a final verdict in 2013 that sentenced them to various prison terms.
In 2014, it was revealed that the trial was faulty, and the defendants were released. Further investigation showed the trial was based on false evidence and fabricated charges designed to imprison FETÖ critics, whose infiltrators have been charged for three separate coup attempts since 2013.
FETÖ is accused of conspiring to imprison its critics through sham trials conducted by its infiltrators in the judiciary with the assistance of police officers loyal to the terrorist group.
In April, 13 defendants, including employees of a news website critical of Gülenists, were acquitted from another case that was allegedly based on fabricated and false evidence concocted by police and prosecutors.