Trial of 'death well colonel' to continue in Turkish civilian court

The Military Supreme Court of Appeals' Chief Public Prosecutor's Office has rejected an appeal from the lawyers of Col. Cemal Temizöz, who is charged with the killing of at least 20 people.

Trial of 'death well colonel' to continue in Turkish civilian court

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Military Supreme Court of Appeals' Chief Public Prosecutor's Office has rejected an appeal from the lawyers of Col. Cemal Temizöz, who is charged with the killing of at least 20 people and who is known as the “death well colonel,” to forward the case file against their client to the Court of Jurisdictional Disputes.

The lawyers were hoping that the court would eventually decide to order a military court to hear the case against the colonel.

However, with the rejection of the appeal the case will continue to be heard at the Diyarbakır 6th High Criminal Court.

Kayseri Provincial Gendarmerie Battalion Commander Col. Temizöz, who has been under arrest for more than a year, is trying to avoid trial in a civilian court. The trial is the culmination of an investigation that was launched when wells in the city of Silopi, in Şırnak province, were found to contain human remains, believed to be the bones of individuals who were victims of an illegal organization inside the gendarmerie in the 1990s known as JİTEM.

Temizöz was the commander of the gendarmerie in Cizre between 1993 and 1995. At that time there were 55 unsolved murders in the area, but the people in the region strongly believe that all of them were organized by Temizöz, who is under arrest and still Kayseri Provincial Gendarmerie Battalion commander. Under the indictment, Temizöz and six others considered accomplices, including former Cizre Mayor Kamil Atağ, are charged with involvement in 20 unsolved murders in the area.

Temizöz's lawyers have requested that the case be transferred to a military court many times before on the grounds that they had lost confidence in the Diyarbakır 6th High Criminal Court. However, their requests have so far been denied.

In March, his lawyers applied to the Diyarbakır court, asking it to forward the case to the Military Supreme Court of Appeals' Chief Public Prosecutor's Office on the grounds that the case falls under the military's jurisdiction. The lawyers hoped that the prosecutor's office would send the case to the Court of Jurisdictional Disputes, which would eventually decide which court would hear the case. If the court decided that the military court should hear the case, the probability of Temizöz being released would increase.

Last Mod: 26 Ağustos 2010, 18:12
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