An Istanbul court sentenced 15 of 10 former staffers of the shut-down daily Zaman to a range of jail terms on terror-linked charges on April 30.
The former staff members were sentenced to jail terms of up to nine years for “aiding an armed terror group without being a member of it.”
While five suspects of the case were released by the order of the Istanbul 13th Heavy Penal Court, the files of three of the suspects were separated from the case.
All suspects who gave their final testimonies to the court were acquitted of charges of attempting a coup d’etat, as well as of attempting to remove the constitution and the Republic of Turkey.
While suspects Hakan Taşdelen, Ahmet Metin Sekizkardeş and Faruk Akkan were sentenced to nine years in jail, suspects Osman Nuri Arslan, Ahmet İrem and Yüksel Durgut received jail terms of seven years and six months.
Suspect Murat Avcıoğlu was sentenced to three years, one month and 15 days in jail for “consciously aiding the organization while not being a member of it.”
Suspects Cuma Kaya, Alaattin Güner and Hüseyin Turan were sentenced to five years in jail for the same charges before they were released
Zaman and its English edition Today’s Zaman, both now shuttered by the authorities, were close to the movement of U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, who is widely believed to have been behind the deadly July 2016 coup attempt.