US extradites FETÖ member to Turkey over sexual abuse of children

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
Published 16.11.2018 20:41
Updated 17.11.2018 18:52
US extradites FETÖ member to Turkey over sexual abuse of children

The U.S. extradited on Friday a member of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) Mehmet Gözegir to Turkey over charges of sexually abusing children.

Gözegir previously served in the board of FETÖ-linked umbrella organization Raindrop Turkish House as a manager.

The Gülenist was expelled from the United States the previous day, as he embarked on a flight from Houston to Istanbul with the presence of security forces.

He was detained on May 14, 2015 in Fort Bend, Texas while he was a PhD student in the Baylor College of Medicine.

During the operation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Homeland Security, Gözegir and 22 other men were detained mainly on grounds of the "online solicitation of a minor" and "attempted sexual assault of a child."

Gözegir was previously released pending trial on a bail of $50,000.

He was expelled from board membership in the foundation and his deportation was decided in June 2018.

The Raindrop Foundation has been operating as the umbrella institution uniting many schools and foundations belonging to the FETÖ.

The Raindrop Foundation, based in Houston, Texas, operates Raindrop Turkish Houses in the U.S. states of Texas, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee and New Mexico.

These organizations, which serve as cultural centers promoting Turkish culture, cuisine and language on paper, actually act as umbrella institutions uniting activities of many charter schools and foundations belonging to the FETÖ; playing an important role in their real estate and H-1B visa fraud schemes using American taxpayer money.

They also serve as intermediaries between Gülenist institutions and local authorities by organizing paid trips and award dinners.

FETÖ and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gülen orchestrated the defeated coup on July 15, 2016, which left 251 people killed and nearly 2,200 injured.

Ankara also accuses FETÖ of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

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