Turkey issues 59 arrest warrants for police, judicial exam fraud

The Ankara chief prosecutor’s office has issued arrest warrants for 59 people over alleged exam cheating and suspected links to the clandestine Islamic movement which Turkey accuses of masterminding a coup attempt in 2016, Hürriyet daily reported on Thursday.

The authorities said the warrants were ordered when an ongoing crackdown on the Gülen religious movement revealed that suspects were involved in irregularities during exams for candidate judges and prosecutors in 2009 and police college entrance exams in 2013, according to Hürriyet.

Thirteen of 30 suspects have been detained so far in simultaneous operations across 17 provinces regarding the investigation of judicial exam fraud, while 12 of 29 suspects have been detained in the police college exam investigation, said the newspaper, citing state-run Anadolu Agency report.

In May, the Ankara chief prosecutor’s office issued arrest warrants for  249 foreign ministry staff over alleged foreign ministry entrance exam cheating.

Since the 2016 coup attempt, more than 77,000 people have been arrested for links to Gülen’s group, which is designated as a terrorist organisation by Turkey. Around 150,000 public employees have been suspended or sacked as part of the global crackdown, which also involves seeking the extradition of alleged members in foreign countries.