The following press release was distributed to media earlier today:
WASHINGTON, D.C. 30 June 2016 – Following a ruling by a Pennsylvania District Court to dismiss a human rights suit on procedural grounds brought against the fugitive Turkish preacher Fethullah Gülen, international lawyer Robert Amsterdam says that the victims will continue their fight for justice.
“Despite the outcome of this ruling, a very clear message has been sent to Gülen and his co-conspirators in the Poconos: the days of impunity are numbered, and your unlawful conduct will be brought to light,” said Amsterdam of Amsterdam & Partners LLP, referring to the scores of Gülen victims.
Amsterdam said his firm is studying the ruling by U.S. District Judge Robert Mariani, which focused on complex questions of the act of state doctrine, and a narrow interpretation of the Alien Tort Claims Act. The Court did not have the opportunity to consider the factual basis of the claim brought against Gülen, which alleged his direct involvement in the falsified trial and unjust imprisonment of opponents in Turkey.
“In typical Gülenist fashion, we can already see that they are twisting the meaning of this judgment before the public, but the fact remains that the Court has not in any way found them innocent of these grievous human rights abuses,” said Amsterdam. “Our team has collected numerous statements from witnesses in both Turkey and the United States which clearly shows a pattern of abuse, fraud, deception, and illegal political donations by Gülen and his lieutenants.”
Amsterdam said Gülen’s move to seek dismissal of the suit instead of answer the allegations raises questions.
“Gülen is sitting on a war chest of billions of dollars, much of it taken from U.S. taxpayers via his opaque charter school network. We are sitting on a mountain of evidence of wrongful activity,” said Amsterdam.
Amsterdam also dismissed claims by Gülen’s supporters that they are unfairly targeted.
“Neither the President of Turkey nor the Turkish Government has the time for personal vendettas. Don’t forget that Turkey is at war with Islamic extremism, as was tragically demonstrated again this week at the Istanbul Ataturk International Airport. Turkey is now also home to around 3 million Syrian refugees and had been fighting the subversion of Gülen’s movement for years, including coup attempts as recently as 2013,” said Amsterdam.
To read key documents in the global investigation, including complaints regarding Gülen charter schools in California and Texas, please visit guleninvestigation.com.
This material is distributed by Amsterdam & Partners LLP on behalf of the Republic of Turkey. Additional information is available at the Department of Justice, Washington, D.C.