World Bulletin / News Desk
A Belgian court on Monday sentenced a Turkish fugitive in absentia for crimes committed in Turkey, including the 1996 murders of two prominent businessmen and a secretary.
Fehriye Erdal -- a member of the terror Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) -- absconded from house arrest in Belgium in 2006 and remains at large.
Bruges High Criminal Court ruled that Erdal be sentenced to 15 years in prison.
The same court in May 2016 said Erdal should be tried in Belgium for crimes committed in Turkey. Erdal’s extradition from Belgium has long been sought by Ankara.
At the May hearing, the prosecution said Erdal would face charges of murdering Sabanci Holding board member Ozdemir Sabanci, Toyota Turkey General Manager Haluk Gorgun and his secretary Nilgun Hasefe.
Sabanci, Gorgun and Hasefe were shot dead at Istanbul’s Sabanci Center on 9 Jan. 1996. Erdal was an employee at the center and allegedly helped her accomplices gain access to the building.
Police identified the culprits in the 1996 murder as Erdal, Ismail Akkol and Mustafa Duyar. Duyar was jailed and later killed in a prison riot in 1999. Erdal and Akkol became fugitives.
Akkol was re-captured in February last year. After a 1999 fire at a building in Knokke, Belgium, where she was staying, Erdal was detained for having a fake passport.
After serving around a year in prison, she was put under house arrest but fled in March 2006.