The highest board of the Supreme Court of Appeals decided that telling someone "Quit and sell tomatoes" cannot be construed as an insult. In 2009, a person,in İzmir identified only as Serhan S., who was convicted of looting, objected to the verdict and told the judge, "You should quit your job and sell tomatoes." The judge in question filed a complaint, accusing the person of insult.
A lower court found Serhan S. guilty of insulting a public official for performing its duty, sentencing him to a year and five months and 15 days in jail. Serhan S.'s appeal was taken up by the Supreme Court of Appeals Fourth Criminal Bureau, which annulled the lower court's sentence, arguing that the suspect's words were not harsh enough to insult the honor of the judge.
However, the Supreme Court of Appeals Prosecutor's Office objected, taking the matter to the Supreme Court of Appeals General Council, which is the highest appellate court. The office argued that, while it went without saying that selling tomatoes is not a dishonorable occupation, by making such a statement, the suspect, rather than criticizing the judge for acting unjustly, was questioning the judge's ability to properly perform his duties.
The top appeals court dismissed the prosecutor's claim, deciding that telling the judge to sell tomatoes was severe criticism but no insult.
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