A case was filed against İsmail Cem Şimşek, the then-Editor-in-Chief of Evrensel newspaper, for news stories published in August 2018 about human rights violations in Tarsus Prison. Şimşek was charged with “continuous slander against the prison administration.”
The indictment, completed on November 29, 2018, stated that “news stories and comments should not violate the rights of other individuals and should not necessitate a judicial and administrative investigation”. It was claimed that “the news stories in question necessitated judicial and administrative investigation against prison officials”.
However, the indictment did not mention that one of the stories was penned by Lawyer Tugay Bek, the President of Ankara Bar Association’s Prison Monitoring Commission, and that the other two stories were also based on Bek’s statements.
The proceedings began on February 19, 2019 at Bakırköy 2. Criminal Court of First Instance. Judge, ordered the acquittal of İsmail Cem Şimşek.