US seeks at least 15-year sentence for Turkish banker
U.S. prosecutors on Wednesday asked a federal judge to sentence a former Turkish banker convicted of violating U.S. sanctions on Iran to at least 15 years in prison, APA reports quoting Anadolu Agency.
In a filling in a Manhattan federal court, prosecutors said the standard sentence for Mehmet Hakan Atilla, former deputy CEO of Turkey's majority state-owned Halkbank, would be 105 years. But they suggested an alternative calculation that would result in a 15 to 20-year term that is in line with similar cases.
Prosecutors also asked the court to impose a monetary punishment.
"The government also respectfully requests that the Court impose a substantial fine within the guidelines range of $50,000 to $500,000," it said, claiming that Atilla’s involvement in the violation of the sanctions created "immense risks" to U.S. national security.
In a 75-page petition to the court, Atilla's lawyers asked the judge for a "fair and merciful" sentence of between 4 to 5 years.
Citing similar cases in which other national banks violated sanctions against Iran, the lawyers noted that none of the directors of those banks were arrested or sentenced but Atilla, who had no connection with the U.S., is facing a life sentence.
Defense lawyers also said evidence showed their client had been used by the “architect of this plot", businessman Riza Sarraf.
Sarraf, who was arrested in the U.S. in March 2016 and accused of violating U.S. sanctions on Iran, pleaded guilty in the case last October and cooperated with prosecutors. He testified against Atilla.
Atilla’s lawyers sought to dismiss all charges last December, citing insufficient evidence. They said prosecutors were unable to prove Atilla had a connection with the crimes committed by Sarraf.
But on Jan. 3, Atilla was found guilty by a jury on five counts related to conspiracy and bank fraud but was acquitted of money laundering.
A month later, a New York judge turned down a request by Atilla to acquit him of all charges due to lack of evidence, saying there was “sufficient evidence” to support the charges.
Atilla will be sentenced on April 11. If he receives a sentence in line with the request by prosecutors, defense lawyers plan to appeal.
Related news releases
- 22.07.2018Los Angeles Police Arrest Man Barricaded at Trader Joe's Grocery Store
- 21.07.2018Ecuador to withdraw asylum for Julian Assange
- 21.07.2018Ex-Colombian guerrillas sworn into Congress
- 21.07.2018Missouri boat accident kills 17, including nine from one family
- 21.07.2018U.S. urges strict U.N. sanctions until North Korea acts on denuclearization
- 20.07.2018Trump, Putin discussed Syria crisis, returning refugees: Pompeo
- 20.07.2018US: Mattis opposes bid to remove Turkey from F-35 program
- 20.07.2018Pompeo: Possible Trump-Putin meeting in Washington 'All to the Good'
- 20.07.2018Pompeo: Trump set up communications channel with Russia in Helsinki
- 20.07.2018At least 8 dead, 10 injured as tourist vessel capsizes in Missouri - UPDATED
- 20.07.2018At least 7 injured after Tornado hits Iowa factory
- 20.07.2018Trump slams EU over $5 billion fine on Google
- 20.07.2018US immigrant group rejects huge donation
- 20.07.2018Donald Trump invites Putin to the White House
- 19.07.2018Trump says China's currency dropping like a rock - UPDATED
- 19.07.2018Trump says EU officials want to negotiate trade deal in Washington visit
- 19.07.2018Trump says he holds Putin personally responsible for election meddling
- 18.07.2018Trump says Russia no longer targeting US
- 18.07.2018Trump asked eight times to meet Iran president at UN last year
- 18.07.2018Japan, EU sign free trade pact amid worries about Trump
- 18.07.2018Military aircraft crashed in Mexico
- 18.07.2018US Senate Democrats Demand Probe of Putin-Trump Summit
- 18.07.2018Trump says he, Putin discussed North Korea, curbing global nuclear weapons
- 18.07.2018Boeing CEO says Embraer deal offers thrifty suppliers more volume
- 18.07.2018Boy killed during protest in southern Venezuela: police
- 18.07.2018Trump tries to calm political storm over Putin summit, says he misspoke
- 18.07.2018Three teens shot, one critically, in U.S. state of North Carolina
- 17.07.2018Communist-run Cuba starts rolling out internet on mobile phones
- 17.07.2018US judge halts deportations of immigrant families
- 17.07.2018Flying 'lava bomb' injures 13 off coast of Hawaii's big island
- 17.07.2018U.S. State Department in talks with Turkey to sell Patriot system
- 17.07.2018Russian Student Arrested in Washington DC, Charged as Foreign Agent
- 16.07.2018Trump says U.S. must find ways to cooperate with Russia
- 16.07.2018Iran sues US for re-imposing sanctions
- 15.07.2018Trump says intends to run for president in 2020
- 15.07.201825 injured after bus overturns on Los Angeles freeway
- 14.07.2018UN General Assembly Reaches global deal on migration
- 14.07.2018UN Security Council imposes arms embargo on South Sudan
- 13.07.2018US indicts 12 Russian spies for 2016 election hacking
- 13.07.2018Department of State: The US strongly supports the Southern Gas Corridor project
- 05.04.2018Pentagon rejects US plan to leave Syria as 'rumors'
- 06.04.2018UN SC discusses alleged poisoning attack against Skripal
- 06.04.2018Earthquake rattles Los Angles area in Southern California
- 05.04.2018US blames UN for spike in chemical weapons attacks
- 05.04.2018US approves $5B in weapons sales to 3 EU countries
- 05.04.2018Facebook says data leak hits 87 million users, widening privacy scandal