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 Jailed journalist Sedef Kabaş: Up to 12 years in prison – Bianet English

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« Held in pre-trial detention for “insulting the President”, journalist Sedef Kabaş is now facing up to 12 years, 10 months in prison as the indictment charging her with “insulting the President” and “insulting public officials” has been accepted » says Bianet English.

Taken into custody for « insulting the President » and arrested by the İstanbul 10th Criminal Judgeship of Peace on January 22, TV journalist Sedef Kabaş has been indicted by the İstanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office Press Bureau. The indictment has been accepted by the court.

As the İstanbul 36th Criminal Court of First Instance has accepted the indictment, Sedef Kabaş will now stand trial on charge of « insulting the President » and « publicly insulting public officials due to their duty » over her remarks about President and ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Minister of Interior Süleyman Soylu and Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Adil Karaismailoğlu.

The indictment refers to journalist Sedef Kabaş as the « suspect », President Erdoğan as the « plaintiff » and ministers Soylu and Karaismailoğlu as « aggrieved party ». While Kabaş faces 1 year, 5 months to 8 years, 2 months in prison for successively « insulting the President », she faces a total of 2 years, 4 months to 4 years, 8 months for « insulting public officials ».

With the indictment accepted by the court, Kabaş will face up to 12 years, 10 months in prison on the offenses charged.

While the court has not yet set the date of the first hearing, the request of Kabaş’s lawyer Uğur Poyraz for her release is still pending.

What happened?

Journalist Sedef Kabaş was arrested on January 22 for « insulting the President » because of her words during a live broadcast a week ago.

« There is a famous saying, ‘A crowned head will get wiser.’ But we see that this isn’t the reality. There is also a saying that is the exact opposite: ‘When cattle go into a palace, they don’t become the king; the palace becomes a barn’, » Kabaş said during a program on TELE1 TV on January 14.

A week later, she posted the second quote on her Twitter and Instagram accounts as a « Circassian proverb, » replacing the word « cattle » with « ox. »

Shortly after, at around 2 a.m. on Saturday, she was detained during a police raid. Hours later, a penal judgeship of peace remanded her in custody. (AEK/SD)

Bianet English, February 15, 2022

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