Merve Buyuksarac, Former Miss Turkey, Found Guilty of Insulting Turkish President On Instagram
Merve Buyuksarac, the 2006 Miss Turkey winner, was found guilty in Turkish court on Tuesday for insulting the country’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on an Instagram post in 2014 that included a satirical poem.
In 2014, prosecutors deemed the poem to be insulting towards Erdogan, who was prime minister at that time, then briefly detained Buyuksarac. The former Miss Turkey denied insulting Erdogan.
Buyuksarac, 27, was given a 14-month suspended prison sentence for insulting a public official. She will have to serve the sentence if she reoffends in the next five years.
Her lawyer, Emre Telci, said that he will file a formal objection to the verdict and then take the case to a higher court, according to reports in the Turkish press.
Erdogan, who stepped into presidency in 2014, has over 2,000 defamation cases in the courts now under a rarely-used law that prohibits insulting the president. These cases are against journalists, cartoonists, teenagers and children. The crime punishable by up to four years in jail.