In operations across 40 cities Wednesday, authorities detained 22 suspects with ties to the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ), while detention warrants were issued for 112 others.
The suspects are "secret imams" of the terrorist group blamed for the July 15, 2016 coup attempt that killed 249 people. A secret imam is a point man who controls FETÖ's infiltrators in the military.
The Chief Prosecutor's Office in the central province of Konya launched a probe into the terrorist group's members and detention warrants were issued based on the testimonies of previously arrested FETÖ suspects.
Tens of thousands were detained or arrested after the coup attempt, and coup trials are underway across Turkey. Few of FETÖ's civilian members have appeared before the courts, as many managed to flee abroad before and after the coup attempt. Authorities have launched almost daily operations to capture the group's members and to pursue international leads to bring the fugitive suspects to justice, including its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gülen.
In a related development, 17 former employees of the Finance Ministry were detained in dawn raids in the capital Ankara for links to the terrorist group. Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor's Office issued arrest warrants for 82 former employees. The suspects were alleged users of the encrypted messaging app Bylock. According to investigators, Bylock is exclusively used by FETÖ for secret communications, including relaying Gülen's messages to his followers.
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