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Documents allegedly link Turkey's prime minister, family to corruption

Feb. 4, 2014 at 4:02 PM

ANKARA, Turkey, Feb. 4 (UPI) -- Turkey's prime minister and his family were linked to bid-rigging and corruption charges in motions filed by public prosecutors, some Turkish websites say.

The websites do not name the prosecutors, but they are believed to be those recently removed from office after conducting investigations into allegations of corruption by Prime Minister Recep Erdogan and his family, Today's Zaman reported Monday.

One of the motions charged Erdogan received two villas from businessman Latif Topbas for helping rezone an environmentally sensitive area in the province of Izmir where Topbas wanted to build eight villas.

The motion terms Topbas the "leader of a criminal group" that rigged bids, committed bribery and illegally built in environmentally protected areas. It also implicated a former environment minister and other officials in changing the zoning to allow the construction.

The second motion charges former Transportation, Maritime Affairs and Communications Minister Binali Yıldırım with rigging bids in return for bribes, as well as fraud and malpractice in the sale of media company Turkuaz Media, which owns the Sabah newspaper and the ATV channel.

The prime minister's son, Bilal Erdogan, was in charge of the bribery process, the document says.

The motion says Yildirim demanded a 10 percent commission to help several businessmen win bids on public projects and prepared a list of who should win the bids even before the bids were opened.

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