Monday, 30 October 2023
A man accused of transferring 11.9 million Turkish Lira accrued from SMS messages sent by a virtual betting site to his own account, was released on bail today, Kibris Postasi reports.
Former Deputy Manager at GSM provider Telsim, Ergin Hergül, was arrested on charges of embezzlement, contravening gaming laws and violating the law aimed at preventing money laundering. He has denied all charges against him.
At court in Nicosia, Police Sergeant Yahya Suiçmez, assigned to the Financial Crimes Unit, gave evidence.
He explained that during the investigation of the virtual betting site Vidobet, which sent bulk SMS messages across Northern Cyprus in February 2022, it was determined that an amount of 5,960,000 TL was deposited into the suspect’s account from the revenues generated from the SMS messages.
The police stated that when the suspect was questioned during that time, he claimed that the money was deposited into his account to expedite the SMS transactions.
The police informed the court that the suspect had been brought before the court twice and had been remanded in custody for a total of seven days. During this time, statements were obtained from individuals to whom the suspect sold SMS packages.
The police clarified that the investigation into the case related to embezzlement by an employee had been completed, while the investigation into the violation of the law aimed at preventing the laundering of criminal proceeds and the law on gambling was ongoing.
The police requested that the suspect be released on bail to ensure his presence in future court hearings. The judge was informed that there were no immovable properties registered in the suspect’s name. They noted that a villa with a swimming pool was registered under his mother’s name, but all sales transactions had the suspect’s name involved. It was further noted that the suspect did not admit to any of the charges brought against him.
Judge Zehra Yalkut Bilgeç ordered the suspect to deposit 100,000 TL in cash as a security and have three guarantors each sign 500,000 TL in bail bonds.