Turkish judge issues guilty verdicts against soldiers accused of trying to kill Erdogan

Reuters News
Posted: Oct 04, 2017 7:37 AM

MUGLA, Turkey (Reuters) - A Turkish court started issuing verdicts on Wednesday in the trial of some 40 soldiers accused of attempting to kill President Tayyip Erdogan during last year's coup, with the first defendants declared guilty and sentenced to life in prison.

The judge read out guilty verdicts for the first several defendants, according to a Reuters reporter at the court in Mugla, southwestern Turkey. Mugla is near the luxury resort where Erdogan and his family narrowly escaped a team of rogue soldiers who stormed his hotel during the night of the coup.

The trial, which started in February, is part of the sweeping crackdown that followed last year's failed putsch and is the biggest such case to reach a verdict so far.

More than 240 people were killed on the night of July 15, when putschists commandeered tanks, warplanes and helicopters, attacking parliament and attempting to overthrow the government.

(Reporting by Ece Toksabay; Writing by David Dolan; Editing by Dominic Evans)