Former Turkish President Abdullah Gül accused of fraud

A man on trial for links to a group accused of planning Turkey’s July 2016 coup has accused Turkey’s 11th President Abdullah Gül of being a covert business partner and conducting fraudulent transactions for his company which financed the group, Patronlar Dünyası new site reported.

Hacı Murat Gülcan is on trial for sending materials to a construction company which built schools for the Gülen movement, a religious group under the leadership of Fethullah Gülen who is blamed the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government for the coup attempt to overthrow the government.

Gülcan, in his petition to court, accused Gül, members of his family and former ruling AKP deputy Tevhid Karakaya - all of whom he claims were covert partners in his business -  of issuing fake invoices and transferring large amounts of money abroad.

Gülcan will face the jude for a hearing on November 21.

Gül, who is among the co-founders of the AKP and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s predecessor in the office, stepped down in 2014 when Erdoğan was elected as president.

Gül was named as a possible opposition umbrella candidate of the opposition to stand against Erdoğan in the presidential election held on June 24 of this year; however, he announced he would not be running due to the lack of a broad consensus among opposition parties, after he was visited by the country’s chief of staff and a key presidential official.

His’s potential candidacy for presidential elections was interpreted as a plot of the Gülen movement by both AKP’s senior members and pro-government journalists.