Over 30 Gülenist police detained in major wiretapping probe
ISTANBULSep 01, 2014 - 12:00 am GMT+3
Sep 01, 2014 12:00 am
33 police officials allegedly having ties to the Gülen Movement were detained in a major wiretapping probe based in Istanbul and other cities on early Monday.
The investigation, part of a wide scope operation to clear police forces of Gülenist infiltrators is conducted by Public Prosecutor of Istanbul. A search warrant was issued for a number of addresses where the suspects reside in a total of 16 cities.
Out of the 33 police officials who were detained, 14 have served in high-ranking positions. They are accused of attempting to topple the government, unlawfully recording phone conversations, espionage, forging official documents and failing to destroy wiretapping recordings.
The suspects have been taken to the hospital for a health checkup and will be transferred to the Istanbul Police Headquarters for further inquiry.
The Gülen Movement led by the controversial U.S.-based imam Fethullah Gülen who lives in a self-imposed exile in rural Pennsylvania is accused of wiretapping thousands of people including Turkish government officials and encrypted phones. As the investigation deepens, various reports on wiretapping activities are being undertaken by the Interior Ministry, prosecutors and telecom watchdogs.
Turkish government officials have continuously expressed their determination to continue to lawfully fight against the Gülen Movement, whose followers are accused of infiltrating state institutions to gain control of state mechanisms, and illegal wiretapping, forgery of official documents and spying.