An elementary school teacher has been sentenced to more than 56 years in prison for sexually molesting eight students in Erzurum.
The actions of teacher Muhammet Faruk K. were revealed after female students, age 10 and 11, told their families about the incidents. The parents lodged complaints against the teacher at the Tortum Public Prosecutor's Office. The teacher was put behind bars as part of the investigation on May 15, 2009. He was released pending trial by Erzurum 1st High Criminal Court after one-and-a-half years. At the hearings, in the meantime, Muhammet Faruk K. denied the allegations and argued that a conspiracy had been plotted against him. At Thursday's hearing the court sentenced him to 56 years, five months and seven days in prison. Since the suspect was not present in the courtroom for the sentence, the court issued an arrest warrant for him.