Skip to main content

What Turkey can learn from coup plot case dismissal

The judgments rendered in the Ergenekon coup-attempt case have been dismissed after nine years because of errors in merit and procedure.

The Ergenekon case, with 275 defendants, began in 2007 when hand grenades were found in a squatter house in Istanbul after an anonymous phone tip. Hundreds of civilians and military personnel were detained on charges that they were involved with an alleged terrorist group called Ergenekon that planned to topple the government.

The first hearing was Oct. 20, 2008, and eventually the trial became the largest of the past decade when 23 indictment sheets were consolidated into one. In the trial process, which lasted about 6½ years, 600 hearings were held. Eight defendants died during that time. Among them were three military officers who reportedly committed suicide because they couldn’t live with what they felt was the indignity of the trial process. Istanbul's 13th High Criminal Court rendered its verdict Aug. 5, 2013, sentencing many to life imprisonment and others to heavy imprisonment for 12 to 34 years.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.