Court arrests former national team goalkeeper on charges of ByLock use

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Turkish midfielder Serkan Balci, goalkeeper Ömer Çatkınç and midfielder Ibrahim Toraman (fromLtoR) jubilate after winning against colombia the soccer Confederations Cup match for the 3rd place 28 June 2003, at the Geoffroy Guichard Stadium in Saint-Etienne. AFP PHOTO PHILIPPE MERLE / AFP PHOTO / PHILIPPE MERLE

Ömer Çatkıç, a former Turkish national football team goalkeeper who was detained on Aug. 22 over links to the Gülen movement, accused of being behind a failed coup last year, was arrested by a court on Monday.

According to the CNN Türk website, Çatkıç was arrested by the İstanbul 7th Penal Court of Peace on Monday for having a ByLock smartphone application, which Turkish authorities believe is a communication tool among followers of the movement, and depositing over a $1 million in Bank Asya, which was shut down by the government for its alleged links to the movement.

Last week, İstanbul police raided Çatkıç’s house and seized electronic devices including his smartphone, on which ByLock was reportedly downloaded. He was taken to the İstanbul Police Department for interrogation.

Having started his career as a professional goalkeeper with Eskişehirspor in 1992, Çatkıç worked at Gaziantepspor, Antalyaspor, Denizlispor and with the national team. He retired in 2012.

Tens of thousands of civil servants, police officers and businessmen have either been dismissed or arrested for using ByLock since the failed coup attempt.

Turkey’s Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 50,510 people have been arrested and 169,013 have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.

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