The police chief in charge of capturing the most senior civilian point man in the July 15, 2016 coup attempt had launched around 320 bogus raids under the guise of capturing the fugitive, according to reports.
According to a report by Akşam daily, the police chief in charge of the organized crime unit of the northwestern city of Sakarya, Ercan Özoğluöz, oversaw the operation to hunt down Adil Öksüz, the civilian in charge at the Akıncı Air Base near Ankara, from where the putchists ran their coup attempt. Öksüz was later arrested near the base before being released by judges currently being tried for links to the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ). Öksüz, a theology lecturer in Sakarya, has disappeared after his controversial release from a brief detention lasting a few hours.
Thousands of people were arrested or detained in the aftermath of the coup attempt that killed 250 people. Authorities say FETÖ infiltrators in the military carried out the coup attempt.
Thousands of others were suspended from their jobs in law enforcement, the military and the judiciary for suspected links to the terrorist group. This left fewer resources at the disposal of security forces tasked with bringing FETÖ members to justice. More importantly, authorities believe there is still a wide, hidden network of FETÖ members active in the police, judiciary and military, despite almost daily nationwide operations to capture the suspects.
Adil Öksüz was last seen in Sakarya hours after his release from detention in Ankara. He left his car there before contacting relatives in the city for the last time and then disappeared.
His wife and children had already traveled to the United States, where they still live, while Öksüz is believed to be in Germany or another European country. Turkey has sought investigation by German authorities for the possible whereabouts of Öksüz, who reportedly hid in a FETÖ "safe house" in Berlin according to Turkish media outlets.
The Akşam report said the law enforcement operations launched by Özoğluöz were especially aimed at failing to cpautre the fugitive, with the police chief ignoring information that could have led to Öksüz's arrest. He also failed to share information with the relevant authorities that Öksüz was spotted at a business plaza in Istanbul, nor did he tell anyone that Öksüz was seen at a meeting with his brother.