Last suspect in Dev-Yol trial released

May 16, 2012, Wednesday/ 17:18:00/ TODAY'S ZAMAN

The Ankara 6th High Criminal Court has dropped charges against the last suspect remaining in the trial of alleged militants belonging to the left-wing Revolutionary Path (Dev-Yol), three months after it dropped accusations against 21 others on the grounds that too much time had passed.

The court announced its decision to drop the case against Yaşar Kanbur, the last Dev-Yol suspect, on the grounds that the statute of limitations has expired.

In February, the Supreme Court of Appeals dropped the case against 21 suspects on the grounds that the statute of limitations on the trial, which began in 1982, had expired.

However, one suspect still remained in the case. Ömer Kavili, a lawyer for Kanbur, said he was not going to state his opinion on whether the court should comply with the Supreme Court of Appeals' decision.

Kanbur said for the past 30 years he has been protesting his innocence, saying he had been sentenced to 15 years in prison on charges of attempting to overthrow the constitutional order. He said he did not accept dismissal of the case on the statute of limitations and demanded to be acquitted.

Prosecutor Murat Yılmaz demanded the dismissal of the case in line with the higher court's decision. The panel of judges unanimously voted to apply the Supreme Court of Appeals' ruling to Kanbur's case and ruled to drop the case.

Lawyers for the co-plaintiffs objected, saying Kanbur had to be punished. However, they are unlikely to appeal the ruling.

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