MEDIA MONITORING DATABASE
Levent Gültekin – trial for “insulting the President of the Republic”
RELATED PERSON OR INSTITUTION
Levent Gültekin
CITY
İstanbul
YEAR OF INTERFERENCE
2022
LAST UPDATED
19/03/2024
TYPE OF STATEMENT
Political
MEDIUM
Television
THE TITLE OF WHOSE RIGHT IS INTERFERED
Journalist
RIGHTS GUARANTEED UNDER THE RIGHT OF FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
Right to Impart Information and Ideas
TYPE OF INTERFERENCE
Judicial Interference
Public Prosecution Offices
File a criminal case
THE LEGAL GROUNDS FOR INTERFERENCE
Turkish Penal Code
Art. 299

A lawsuit was filed against journalist Levent Gültekin over his statement on his TV show; he was charged with “insulting the President of the Republic” as per the Article 299 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK).

Gültekin announced the lawsuit on his Twitter account, saying: “I have yet another lawsuit. They have apparently considered my remark ‘The President openly lies to the public’ to be an insult and filed a criminal case against me. If I receive a political ban, I will blame it on the opposition because they are the ones who control the judiciary” (December 17).

2023

At the first hearing at the Istanbul 23rd Criminal Court of First Instance, the prosecutor gave his opinion on the merits. Yaprak requested acquittal considering that Gültekin’s words were “in the nature of severe criticism” (March 30).

President Erdoğan’s lawyer Gökhan Arslanoğlu stated that the expressions of Gültekin cannot be understood within the scope of freedom of expression and wanted him to be punished according to the indictment. The court announced its ruling and acquitted Gültekin stating he was not proven guilty (April 13).

İstanbul Bakırköy 44th Crime Courth of First Instance, sentenced journalist Levent Gültekin to 11 months and 20 days in prison on the charge of “insulting the President of the Republic” (Turkish Criminal Code Article 299) on 19 March.