Conviction upheld for lighter collection

Aug. 7, 2012 at 2:22 PM

ANKARA, Turkey, Aug. 7 (UPI) -- A Turkish court upheld the conviction of a member of a radical group, saying his cache of cigarette lighters could be used for terrorist purposes.

Turkey's Supreme Court of Appeals approved the seven-year prison sentence the Izmir High Criminal Court gave Arif Pelit in October 2011 after police found 19 lighters in his home, the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet Daily News reported Tuesday.

Although Pelit, a two-pack-a-day smoker, claimed the lighters were brought home from the coffee house where he works, and the Izmir Police Department and the prosecutor agreed his lighter collection did not represent a criminal threat, the Supreme Court noted Pelit is a "member of the DHKP/C (Revolutionary People's Liberation Party/Front) terrorist organization" and that the lighters could be used on behalf of the organization, the newspaper said.

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