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Turkey detains 35 in customs bribery investigation

Jan. 11, 2014 at 2:12 PM

MERSIN, Turkey, Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Turkish authorities said they detained 35 people this week in a bribery investigation at the port of Mersin.

Ten of the suspects taken into custody Friday were customs officers who were allegedly involved in payoffs that allowed trucks carrying unspecified cargoes from Italy and Iraq to be off-loaded without declaring their contents.

The detainees were still undergoing questioning Saturday, Today's Zaman said. Details of the alleged crimes were under seal by Mersin prosecutors.

Investigators were suspicious of a seemingly informal declaration process in which inspectors met with representatives of shipping companies and customs brokers in the passageways of ships where payoffs allegedly changed hands, the newspaper said.

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