Sendika.Org editor gets prison sentence for tweeting
The authorities immediately opened a case and an investigation on this tweet and delivered yesterday finding it an insult to the president and ordered 11 months and 20 days of prison sentence for Demirhan.
Demirhan’s tweet constituted a crime, the prosecutors said. It was an insult to the president, he claimed. And Ali Ergin Demirhan had to defend himself in courts to prove that was not his intention.
The election had been decided by the ruling AKP and its coalition partner MHP, a nationalist, racist, far-right party in a hurry to prevent more losses from their voting base. On that election evening, the militants connected to the ruling party and its coalition were already terrorizing the streets after open threats against the opposition on social media with impunity. The ruling parties had tried to suppress any opposition and had even sent the key opposition party’s president, Selahattin Demirtaş, to prison with trumped up charges. Upon receiving the preliminary results, the main opposition candidate Muharrem Ince had wrapped up and left abruptly to go home without challenging the openly stacked and fraudulent elections. In this atmosphere, Demirhan had tweeted:
The authorities immediately opened a case and an investigation on this tweet and delivered yesterday finding it an insult to the president and ordered 11 months and 20 days of prison sentence for Demirhan. The sentence took into consideration neither the events happening on the streets where pro-government thugs were attacking opposition nor the challenges brought on the way elections were held.
Ali Ergin Demirhan spoke after the sentence explaining what lay behind his tweet:
The sentence against Ali Ergin Demirhan, however, has been postponed on probation. If Demirhan does not commit the same “crime” in the next 5 years, the sentence will be reversed.
Demirhan’s attorney Tuba Güneş said they will appeal the sentence.
Ali Ergin Demirhan, an editor for the news portal Sendika.Org, has been sentenced to 11 months and 20 days in prison on the charge of “insulting the president.”
Demirhan was on trial because of a social media post he had shared. The court deferred Demirhan’s sentence by five years, during which he will be subject to probation. Demirhan announced the verdict against him on 16 July 2019 on Twitter.
28 June 2019:
Sendika.Org editor Ali Ergin Demirhan was taken into custody on 28 June 2019 in Istanbul during a security check by the police. Demirhan was taken to the Aksaray Police Station. The grounds for his arrest was an ongoing investigation on the allegation that Demirhan “insulted the president” on social media. Demirhan was released after giving his statement at the Istanbul Courthouse.
Police on June 28 raided the Istanbul offices of the news website Sendika.Org as part of an ongoing investigation into Sendika.Org editor Ali Ergin Demirhan.