A Muslim televangelist, Adnan Oktar who surrounded himself with scantily clad women he refers to as “kittens” has been sentenced to 8,658 years in prison by an Istanbul court on Wednesday.
Oktar who hosted television programmes surrounded by women wearing lots of makeup and scanty clothes preached creationism and conservative values.
In 2021, the 66-year-old was handed 1,075 years for crimes including sexual assault, sexual abuse of minors, fraud and attempted political and military espionage.
However, the ruling was overturned by an upper court. During the retrial, Istanbul high criminal court sentenced Oktar to 8,658 years in prison on several charges including sexual abuse and depriving someone of their liberty among others offences. The court also sentenced 10 other suspects to 8,658 years in prison each.
One of the women speaking (anonymously) at his trial said Oktar had sexually violated her and other women, most times force-feeding them with contraceptive pills. Around 69,000 contraceptive pills were found in his residence, which he claimed in court were used to treat skin disorders and menstrual problems.
Oktar, whom some see as cult leader, gained notoriety for his programmes on the online A9 television channel and had regularly been denounced by Turkiye’s religious leaders. In a 2018 probe by the city’s police financial crimes unit, Oktar was taken into custody in Istanbul.
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