Court reduces sentence of 78-year-old for insulting Turkish president to 7 years

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A Turkish appeals court has reversed a lower court sentence of eight years, two months in prison for 78-year-old Ali Ergin Güran and handed him down seven years for insulting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in posts on social media, the Sözcü newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Güran’s lawyer applied to the appeals court after a lower court had initially sentenced him eight years, two months on charges of insulting the president while suspending a sentence on charges of insulting Defense Minister Hulusi Akar, who was chief of General Staff of at the time.

In his legal opinion, the prosecutor of the court of appeals argued that taking Güran’s age into consideration, the judgment of the court of first instance should be vacated.

Güran in his defense claimed that he did not remember which of the remarks on his social media account he had posted himself. He claimed that his account had been hacked and that he changed his password three times upon warnings from the platform.

Güran’s lawyer announced that they would appeal the new ruling as well.

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