Turkey's main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) has submitted a parliamentary motion demanding that assets of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's lawyers be investigated.
CHP deputy Mahir Başarır said that Turkish courts had so far convicted 9,554 people over charges of “insulting” Erdoğan and lawyers had received counsel fees for these cases.
“It is understood that President Erdoğan's lawyers have received ill-gotten gains and the insult cases have turned into a source of unearned income,” Başarır said.
Başarır said in his parliamentary motion that more than 63,000 people have so far faced investigations over charges of “insulting” Erdoğan, 9,554 of whom have received sentences.
The CHP deputy also shared the number of “insult” cases that Erdoğan's predecessors have launched against citizens.
Basing the figures on official figures, Başarır said that 340 people were investigated over these charges during the term of Turkey's seventh president Kenan Evren, while this number was 207, 158, 163 and 848 respectively for the terms of country's 8th president Turgut Özal, 9th president Süleyman Demirel, 10th president Ahmet Necdet Sezer and 11th president Abdullah Gül.
Başarır said in his motion that an “illegal” process took place with regards to an “insult” case launched by Erdoğan. He said that although Erdoğan failed to give his lawyer Ahmet Özel the legal authority to act on his behalf (with a document called power of attorney), the Justice Ministry sent the relevant case's notifications to Özel and ruled that Özel receive 4,080 liras in counsel fee.
“It is an illegal procedure for Ahmet Özel to receive this fee, although he has not been given the power of attorney,” said Başarır.
The deputy said that the “unfair and illegal gains” received by Erdoğan's lawyers have been “inflicting a deep wound in people's consciences.”
Accordingly, the deputy asked the parliament to investigate the lawyers' assets and see if there have been other similar “illegal processes” behind the accumulation of their wealth.