Turkish court gives life sentences to 337 in mass coup attempt trial
A Turkish court has jailed 337 former pilots and other suspects for life on charges of involvement in the botched July 2016 coup attempt against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
On Thursday, the court handed 79 aggravated life sentences to fifteen former military officers, including pilots who bombed Ankara, and four civilian covert imams, who orchestrated the putsch from inside a military base near the capital.
All of them were also sentenced to 3,901 years and six months in prison for “attempting to intentionally kill,” “attempting to deprive a person of liberty” and “depriving a person of liberty.”
The court also issued aggravated life sentences against another 291 defendants, while forty-six others were sentenced to life.
Sixty suspects were given jail sentences of various lengths while 75 were acquitted.
Defendants were charged with a long list of crimes, from murder and attempt to violate the constitutional order to an assassination attempt targeting Erdogan.
According to the indictment, defendants orchestrated a major part of the botched putsch from Akinci Air Base northwest of Ankara, including dispatching F-16 fighter jets to bomb state buildings.