Jan 13 2018

Turkish police interrogated about New York trial evidence - newspaper

Turkish authorities are to re-interrogate three former police officers in connection with wiretap evidence leaked to a U.S. court and used to convict a Turkish banker of helping Iran evade sanctions imposed over its nuclear programme, Turkish newspaper Sözcü said.

The trial of Mehmet Hakan Atilla, the former deputy general manager of state-owned Halkbank, deepened rifts between the United States and Turkey after state’s witness, Iranian Turkish gold trader Reza Zarrab, said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had given the green light to the scheme and other officials had taken bribes to cover it up.

Erdoğan said the trial was conducted by a “fake court” and was part of a U.S. plot to undermine his government.

The wiretap evidence used to back up Zarrab’s testimony was smuggled to the United States by a Turkish former police officer.

The three former police officers are now being questioned to see whether they had a role in the transfer of the Turkish police evidence to U.S. prosecutors, Sözcü said. All of them worked at the financial crimes department at the time the evidence was collected in 2013, it said.