Turkish opposition leader-mob boss row intensifies as Erdoğan ally backs Çakıcı

A row between notorious Turkish mob boss Alaattin Çakıcı and the leader of the main opposition main opposition Republican Peoples’ Party (CHP) leader, intensified on Wednesday, when the Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu took legal action over threats made by the organised crime leader.

Hours later, Çakıcı ally, far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli expressed support for the mob boss, accusing Kılıçdaroğlu of “slander and cooperation with terrorists.’’

Kılıçdaroğlu on Wednesday filed a criminal complaint against notorious mob boss Alaattin Çakıcı after the mobster threatened him with physical violence.

The criminal complaint against Çakıcı, filed by a lawyer representing the CHP leader, accuses the mob boss of defamation and threats, T24 news site reported.

The row began on Tuesday, when 67-year-old organised crime leader targeted Kılıçdaroğlu, after the latter criticized the government over Çakıcı’s release from prison.

“Look, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, traitors may incite you by (utilising) the psychology of the masses,’’ Çakıcı said in a statement released on Twitter. “But they won’t be by your side when you are in trouble. That is why I am telling you to watch your step.’’

Çakıcı was released in April as part of an amnesty law designed to free up to one third of the country’s prison population after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s junior coalition partner, Bahçeli, called for a general amnesty, specifically citing Çakıcı, with whom he is known to have close ties.

Çakıcı on Wednesday continued taking jabs at Kılıçdaroğlu after the CHP leader said mobsters had become the mouthpiece for the AKP-MHP alliance.

“Have me killed. I am asking, do you and your aides have the courage to do so?’’ Çakıcı said in another hand-written letter released on Twitter.

The letter also warned the CHP leader against references to Bahçeli.

Later on Wednesday, the MHP leader chimed in, slamming Kılıçdaroğlu for referring to his “compatriot’’ Çakıcı as a so-called mafioso. 

“If Kılıçdaroğlu is looking for a mob boss, he should look to traitors he is in cooperation with,’’  Bahçeli said on Twitter, referring to jailed Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş and philanthropist Osman Kavala. 

Demirtaş and Kavala are serving prison sentences over terror charges and attempting to undermine the constitutional order, respectively.