Over 36,000 investigated, 12,000 faced trial for insulting Erdoğan in 2019- report

A total of 36,066 people were put under investigation and 12,298 of them, including 318 minors, faced trial in 2019 for insulting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Birgün daily said on Sunday.

Some 3,831 people were convicted for insulting the president last year, Birgün said.

Insulting the president is a crime according to Article 299 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK) and carries a maximum sentence of four years in prison.

Investigations and convictions on Article 299 have skyrocketed since Erdoğan stepped into office as president in 2014.

A total of 340 people faced trial for insulting the president during the term of former president Kenan Evren, who took office in 1982 after the military coup of 1980, Birgün said.

During Turgut Özal’s term, from 1989 to 1993, the number dropped to 207, and further to 158 during the term of Süleyman Demirel from 1993 to 2000.