An indictment has been issued against Cumhuriyetreporters Alican Uludağ and Duygu Güvenç, accusing the journalists of “publicly degrading the judiciary” as per Article 301 of the Turkish Criminal Code, on account of their reporting about the US pastor Andrew Brunson, who was released from house arrest by the 2nd Criminal Court of First Instance of Istanbul.
At the first hearing held on April 4, Alican Uludağ made his first statement. Following hearing on October 10, Duygu Güvenç made her first statement and the hearing was adjourned until 9 January 2020.
At the hearing held at the Second Criminal Court of First Instance in Istanbul on January 9, 2020, the court accepted the lawyers’ requests for time for defense and adjourned the hearing until April 16, 2020 (9 January).
The hearing scheduled to be held on April 16, was postponed to July 2 by he 2nd Criminal Court of First Instance of Istanbul due to measures taken in relation to coronavirus pandemic (16 April).
At the 6th hearing of the case on July 2, journalist Uludağ’s lawyer reported excuse and did not attend the hearing. Abbas Yalçın, the lawyer of Güvenç, made a defense. The hearing was adjourned until 22 October (2 July).
Handing down its judgement at the final hearing on October 22, 2020, the court has ruled that Uludağ and Güvenç shall be acquitted as “the act in question is not defined as a crime in the law” (October 22).