criminal cases and jurisdiction

According to the Turkish Penal Code Article 8, whether foreigners or citizens commit a crime in Turkey, the perpetrator gets punishment. What does “to commit a crime in Turkey” mean? It means that criminal action has (partly) taken in Turkey. The criminal law proceeding is also known as the territoriality system.

Sometimes foreigner commits a crime in other countries which, requires jurisdiction in Turkey. There are two main two proceeding types:

  • If a foreigner commits a crime that will damage Turkey’s reputation, and if their action requires at least one year of jail punishment
  • Regardless of the amount of legal punishment for some offenses require a proceeding in Turkey if the offense hurt someone.
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The Criminal Cases of Foreigners Who Commit Detrimental Actions Against Turkey

  • The offense types are entitled to the Turkish Supreme Court. The Supreme Court asks for some preconditions which fulfill action to proceed on the court:

    • The perpetrator must commit the action outside of the border of Turkey.
    • The perpetrator must not be a Turkish citizen.
    • The offense must require one year of imprisonment (minimum).
    • The defense must damage Turkey or Turkish citizens. If this is the case, two preconditions must fulfill:
    1. If perpetrator or suspect does not get sentenced due to their offense in other countries
    2. If the one who gets harmed by the action apply for a trial
    • The official must find the suspect or perpetrator in Turkey.

    If the victim is not Turkish and the act happened not on the Turkish border, Turkey still can judge the perpetrator or suspect

    within the following conditions:

    • If the offense has imprisonment punishment of more than three year
    • If an extradition agreement does not exist between the perpetrators’ country
    • If the extradition exits but one party disagrees

Crimes Covered by Absolute Trial Authorization by Turkey

  • There some actions that get judged in Turkey, whether it happens in Turkey or not:
    • Holocaust
    • Crimes against humanity
    • Refugee trafficking
    • Human trafficking

    Turkey also has authorization if the Minister of Justice files a proceeding against the following crimes:

    • Detrimental offenses against Turkey’s sovereignty
    • Torture
    • Polluting the environment on purpose
    • Drug selling and manufacturing
    • Facilitating drug usage
    • Money forgery
    • Seal counterfeiting
    • Prostitution
    • To hijack any vehicles:

    According to Article 19 of the Turkish Panel Code, the punishment of these actions (listed above) cannot be more than the penalty that is entitled to the country that crime happens. However, if the offense has an intention to hurt persons, Turkey can determine the outcome of legal penalties.

The Authorized Courts for the Crimes Which Committed in Other Countries

  • Up to Article 14 of the Turkish Panel Code, under the provisions of law and jurisdiction in crimes committed in foreign countries should be investigated and prosecuted in Turkey is determined as follows:

    • If the location of the crime is not evident, the court gets authorized where the suspect or perpetrator gets caught.
    • The nearest court gets authorized where the suspect or perpetrator has lived for the last time.

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