Court of Appeals Shows Sympathy for Murders of Gays!
Turkish Court of Appeals shows sympathy for another murderer of a gay man, keeping up with its “unjust provocation” mitigation. Tolgahan Gürsoy stabbed Ahmet Ö. to death in August, 2010 in İstanbul. Local court ruled that the perpetrator was “unjustly provocated” so his punishment must be reduced. Objection to the ruling was declined by Court of Appeals, backing the anti-gay mitigation. Court of Appeals' 1st Criminal Chamber unanimiously approved local court’s proposal for “the reasons of mitigatory unjust provocation and discretionary mitigation” last December. Hence, life imprisonment of Tolgahan Gürsoy for “intentional homicide” has been reduced to 12 years by “unjust provocation”, and then to 10 years by “discretionary mitigation.” Lawyer Fırat Söyle told kaosgl.org that the murder of Ahmet Ö. should be defined as a hate crime. He pointed that the perpetrator stabbed the victim 9 times and stated that it is unacceptable that the prosecution considers the murder as an “ordinary judicial case.” Söyle also criticized that prosecution and court ruled that the perpetrator was “unjustly provocated” and he continued with his objections as follows: “Prosecution’s assertion that the perpetrator ‘tried to protect his honor following a sex offer’ cannot be true because the perpetrator Tolgahan Gürsoy met Ahmet Ö. in a gay bar and went to Ahmet Ö.’s house to have sex with him. There is no reason for Gürsoy to stab him 9 times.” Arguing that Ahmet Ö. was murdered as a result of homophobic hate, Söyle says that it is unacceptable that it is only the perpetrator’s claims which were credited in court. “Sexual orientation cannot be an excuse for murder and discrimination.” Supreme Court Shows Sympathy For Murders of Gays!Lawyer Fırat Söyle highlighted the similarities in pleas of perpetrators and characteristics of murders between many incidents and added: “Common traits of such murders are use of a knife, multiple stabbings and pleas. Court rulings mostly rely on the pleas of perpetrators for their advantage.” Court of Appeals does not accept the objections made against the “unjust provocation” mitigations of local courts, as it didn’t in this case. Court of Appeals Always Does It!Black Pink Triangle Assocation in the western city of İzmir organizes Baki Koşar Week of Struggle Against Hate Crimes” for the 5th time this year in remembrance of journalist Baki Koşar, who was stabbed to death at his home in 2006. As he was gay, local court awarded the murderer with “unjust provocation” mitigation. Punishment of life imprisonment was reduced to 15 years and Court of Appeals approved the ruling despite of huge reactions LGBT organizations gave back then. Photos: 1. Cover of Kaos GL Magazine's February 1997 issue. "Murders of gay and trans people are political murders. Justice will come one day for gay and trans people who have been murdered and pushed to suicide. 2. "Murders of gay and trans people are political murders. We know the murderer! Kaos GL", Banner carried by members of Kaos GL in the meeting of the trade unions march on November 9, 2001. Kaos GL's slogan has later been embraced by other LGBT organizations in Turkey.