Expression Interrupted

Journalists and academics bear the brunt of the massive crackdown on freedom of expression in Turkey. Scores of them are currently subject to criminal investigations or behind bars. This website is dedicated to tracking the legal process against them.

Prosecutor seeks life imprisonment for Nazlı Ilıcak

Prosecutor seeks life imprisonment for Nazlı Ilıcak

The veteran journalist is charged in this case with “espionage” for a newspaper column she wrote in 2015 


Imprisoned journalist Nazlı Ilıcak appeared before an Istanbul court on 6 September for the third hearing of a trial in which she is charged with “espionage” for a newspaper column she wrote in 2015.

P24 monitored the hearing at the 26th High Criminal Court of Istanbul, where Ilıcak addressed the court via the courtroom video-conferencing system SEGBİS from Bakırköy Prison.

Ilıcak is currently in detention pending the conclusion of the appeal process for the aggravated life sentence she was handed down in February in a separate “coup” case.

The prosecutor submitted his final opinion in Thursday’s hearing in the ongoing “espionage” case, requesting yet another aggravated life sentence for the veteran journalist for “disclosing information that must be kept confidential for reasons relating to the security of the state.”

Addressing the court earlier in the hearing, Ilıcak’s lawyers requested that the charge against Ilıcak be dropped because the statute of limitations has expired.

Also addressing the court, Ilıcak said she had not published the document that is the grounds for the accusations and that she had only made remarks on the contents of the document. “The prosecution should investigate whether I made any public comments about the document I wrote about in my column dated 2 January 2015. I did not talk about that document before that date, because I had no knowledge beforehand that the said document existed. The said document was sent to me via Twitter.”

The prosecutor then gave his final opinion of the case, requesting that Ilıcak be convicted as per Article 330 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), which carries a life sentence.

Ilıcak requested additional time to prepare her defense statement in response to the prosecutor’s final opinion. The court adjourned the trial until 9 October 2018.