The Istanbul 14th Heavy Penal Court sentenced former police chiefs Ali Fuat Yılmazer and Ramazan Akyürek to aggravated life sentences in the final hearing in the trial of the killing of Agos Newspaper editor-in-chief Hrant Dink.
After 131 hearings over 10 years, the verdict was announced on 26 March in a case in which 76 defendants, six of whom were arrested, 13 of whom were fugitives, were tried. Former Istanbul Police Chief Celalettin Cerrah and intelligence officer Sabri Uzun were not given any sentences due to a “time out”.
Muharrem Demirkale, a former soldier who had been under arrest, received a two-time aggravated life sentence for both “deliberate killing” and “violation of the constitution”. Former Colonel Ali Öz was sentenced to 25 years for “deliberate killing”.
The court also decided to arrest the defendants Gazi Günay, Yavuz Karakaya, Osman Gülben, Hasan Durmuşoğlu, Özkan Mumcu and Faruk Sarı.
While the Dink family lawyers announced that they would appeal the decision of the court, family members emphasised that “Both Fetö and Ergenekon played a role in the murder of Hrant Dink” and the state is also responsible.
“The decision of the court is wrong, the court has ended with the acquittal of many who are responsible for the murder based on the evidence,” said the attorney Hakan Bakircioglu at the end of the trial.