Cablegate: Istanbul Police Arrest Traffickers

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.




E.O. 12958: N/A

1. (U) Hurriyet newspaper reported September 25 that Turkish
show business manager Muzaffer Arslan coerced four Ukrainian
ballerinas to work in a night club in Istanbul's Atasehir
district in mid-June. Arslan took possession of their
passports, forced them to perform at the Play Show night club
and involved them in prostitution. Businessman Kemalettin
Cirak, who bought one of the trafficked ballerinas, raped
her. After escaping Cirak, the ballerina and her three
companions sought shelter with the police.

2. (U) The Istanbul Police arrested Arslan, Cirak, nightclub
director Serdar Goktas, chief waiter Niyazi Ebcin and driver
Fatih Saribas in mid-September. According to Turkish
National Police (TNP) Head of the Bureau for Combating
Illegal Migration and Trafficking in Persons, Inspector
Fikret Isgoren, four are in custody pending trial. The
police repatriated the dancers to the Ukraine.

3. (U) TNP Foreigners Unit Head Mehmet Terzioglu commented
that 20 other organizers from Ukraine, Moldova, Russia and
other Black Sea countries have been arrested for trafficking
and are currently in jail while waiting for trials under the
Turkish Penal Code's Section 201B, enacted August 2002, which
specifically prohibits trafficking in persons.

4. (SBU) Terzioglu complained that the International Office
of Migration and State Department reports did not credit
Turkey for its six current ongoing investigations related to
trafficking. However, he did not want to provide further
details, except to say the investigations were "confidential"
and mainly involve hotels in Istanbul. Terzioglu indicated
his interest in working with us to improve Turkey's standing
from Tier 2 to Tier 1.

5. (U) Comment: The Hurriyet article identified the four
trafficked victims by name and photograph. We will suggest
to our police contacts that police keep victims' names and
photographs from the press in future cases. End comment.

© Scoop Media

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