Absüssamed Köse, a department head at Istanbul's Marmara University is listed on a sex offender registry in the United States for trying to solicit sex from a minor in the state of Texas, news portal Bianet reported on Jan. 15.
Köse was working as a physician in Houston at the time of his arrest in April 2015, local media reported, and was arrested as a result of an undercover operation online in which a law enforcement officer posed as a minor to catch sex offenders.
“We're sick of trying to help mend lives ruined by men like this. How could he possibly become a department head?" a therapist who wished to remain anonymous, told Bianet.
The head of Marmara's Psychology Department, Köse is listed with a shortened version of his name, Samed, in the department registry, and has grown out his hair since 2015.
Köse failed to respond to all inquiries by Bianet.
Sexual abuse of minors in Turkey is defined as soliciting sexual acts with anyone under the age of 15, even though the legal age of adulthood in Turkey is 18.
The Turkish judiciary has a poor track record of not punishing child sexual abusers under the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP): Ankara stirred up nationwide controversy most recently by suggesting a withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention, an international piece of legislation protecting women and children in Turkey.