ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A lawyer says an American tourist who picked up stones during a beach holiday in Turkey has received a one-year suspended sentence for attempting to smuggle historical artifacts.
Jason Dement from Purvis, Mississippi, was briefly detained in April at an airport near the Mediterranean coast because two pieces inside a bag of collected stones appeared to be artifacts. Experts later said the stones were from the Roman era.
Lawyer Fatma Zuhre Akinci said Friday a court convicted Dement of attempted smuggling and gave him a suspended sentence. He would serve it only if he reoffends in Turkey within five years.
Dement, 30, was scheduled to fly to Germany, where he works at a U.S. army base.
Turkey has broad definitions about what constitute historical artifacts and strict anti-smuggling laws.