In Outrageous Move, Lead Turkish Judge Essentially Refuses to Allow American Pastor Andrew Brunson's Defense Witnesses to Testify | American Center for Law and Justice

0%

Article Completion

SHARE

In Outrageous Move, Lead Turkish Judge Essentially Refuses to Allow American Pastor Andrew Brunson's Defense Witnesses to Testify

By 

ACLJ.org

|

May 15, 2018

In an outrageous miscarriage of justice, American Pastor Andrew Brunson’s trial just got a lot worse.

In a cruel show of abject hostility and blatant disregard for any semblance of the rule of law – proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that this trial is a completely and utter sham – the Turkish judges essentially threw out all the witnesses for Pastor Andrew’s defense.

We recently reported to you how over the course of 11 grueling hours, 7 witnesses for the prosecution (2 secret and 5 open – 2 of whom were prisoners and only 1 of whom had ever actually even met Pastor Andrew) were allowed to give testimony against him. When the Pastor’s Turkish attorney pointed out that one of these men had been convicted on 14 counts of fraud, the lead judge claimed he didn’t see how the fact was relevant. In fact, the judge said that all the prosecution witnesses’ statements would be taken as fact.

But when Pastor Andrew’s Turkish attorney then submitted his own list of witnesses for the defense, the head judge declared that anyone who was a suspect would not be allowed to testify. Even worse he disregarded the remaining witnesses for the pastor, stating that they wouldn't have anything relevant to say.

Essentially the message is they aren’t going to allow anyone to testify on Pastor Andrew’s behalf. This ruling can’t even be appealed until after it is put in writing– even more delays.

This isn’t justice. This is a sham, a show trial built on made up charges to imprison an American pastor because of his Christian faith.  In fact, this isn’t a trial at all.  It’s a hostage taking.

The judges then delayed the trial yet again – this time until July 18th. That’s over 2 months away, while Pastor Andrew continues to languish in a prison in Turkey.

Pastor Andrew is being held as a political prisoner. He has been charged with  “Christianization.” He has committed no crime.

It’s an absolute outrage.

Turkey is playing political games with an innocent Christian pastor’s life. They’re dangling him while demanding the exchange of a Turkish cleric freely living in the United States.

Enough is enough.

We need the whole world to apply maximum pressure on Turkey – a supposed NATO ally. We told you how 66 U.S. Senators and 50 Members of the European Parliament sent letters to Turkey’s President demanding Pastor Andrew's freedom. President Trump has also called for his release, and recently tweeted he should be “allowed to come home to his beautiful family.” We must build on this momentum before it is too late.

We remain directly involved in his legal defense in Turkey. We continue to work aggressively in Congress, with the State Department, the White House, the European Parliament, and the European Council to fight for Pastor Andrew’s freedom. The U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has agreed to take his case and we are hopeful they too will find this is a gross violation of his human rights.

This sham trial must end and he must be set free. Please join with over half a million supporters and sign the petition demanding his freedom.

ACLJ staff writers are part of the ACLJ’s legal, legislative, and media teams; and they are all dedicated to the principle that religious freedom and freedom of speech are universal, inalienable, God-given rights for all people.

ACLJ.org

ACLJ staff writers are part of the ACLJ’s legal, legislative, and media teams; and they are all dedicated to the principle that religious freedom and freedom of speech are universal, inalienable, God-given rights for all people.

PETITION

600,288 Signatures

Save Pastor Andrew Brunson

Read Full Petition
First Name is required
Last Name is required
Email is required
Zip Code is required

In Outrageous Move, Lead Turkish Judge Essentially Refuses to Allow American Pastor Andrew Brunson's Defense Witnesses to Testify

By 

ACLJ.org

|

May 15, 2018

In an outrageous miscarriage of justice, American Pastor Andrew Brunson’s trial just got a lot worse.

In a cruel show of abject hostility and blatant disregard for any semblance of the rule of law – proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that this trial is a completely and utter sham – the Turkish judges essentially threw out all the witnesses for Pastor Andrew’s defense.

We recently reported to you how over the course of 11 grueling hours, 7 witnesses for the prosecution (2 secret and 5 open – 2 of whom were prisoners and only 1 of whom had ever actually even met Pastor Andrew) were allowed to give testimony against him. When the Pastor’s Turkish attorney pointed out that one of these men had been convicted on 14 counts of fraud, the lead judge claimed he didn’t see how the fact was relevant. In fact, the judge said that all the prosecution witnesses’ statements would be taken as fact.

But when Pastor Andrew’s Turkish attorney then submitted his own list of witnesses for the defense, the head judge declared that anyone who was a suspect would not be allowed to testify. Even worse he disregarded the remaining witnesses for the pastor, stating that they wouldn't have anything relevant to say.

Essentially the message is they aren’t going to allow anyone to testify on Pastor Andrew’s behalf. This ruling can’t even be appealed until after it is put in writing– even more delays.

This isn’t justice. This is a sham, a show trial built on made up charges to imprison an American pastor because of his Christian faith.  In fact, this isn’t a trial at all.  It’s a hostage taking.

The judges then delayed the trial yet again – this time until July 18th. That’s over 2 months away, while Pastor Andrew continues to languish in a prison in Turkey.

Pastor Andrew is being held as a political prisoner. He has been charged with  “Christianization.” He has committed no crime.

It’s an absolute outrage.

Turkey is playing political games with an innocent Christian pastor’s life. They’re dangling him while demanding the exchange of a Turkish cleric freely living in the United States.

Enough is enough.

We need the whole world to apply maximum pressure on Turkey – a supposed NATO ally. We told you how 66 U.S. Senators and 50 Members of the European Parliament sent letters to Turkey’s President demanding Pastor Andrew's freedom. President Trump has also called for his release, and recently tweeted he should be “allowed to come home to his beautiful family.” We must build on this momentum before it is too late.

We remain directly involved in his legal defense in Turkey. We continue to work aggressively in Congress, with the State Department, the White House, the European Parliament, and the European Council to fight for Pastor Andrew’s freedom. The U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has agreed to take his case and we are hopeful they too will find this is a gross violation of his human rights.

This sham trial must end and he must be set free. Please join with over half a million supporters and sign the petition demanding his freedom.

ACLJ staff writers are part of the ACLJ’s legal, legislative, and media teams; and they are all dedicated to the principle that religious freedom and freedom of speech are universal, inalienable, God-given rights for all people.

ACLJ.org

ACLJ staff writers are part of the ACLJ’s legal, legislative, and media teams; and they are all dedicated to the principle that religious freedom and freedom of speech are universal, inalienable, God-given rights for all people.

0%

Article Completion

SHARE

PETITION

600,288 Signatures

Save Pastor Andrew Brunson

Read Full Petition
First Name is required
Last Name is required
Email is required
Zip Code is required

Stay Connected

Email is required

Receive the latest news, updates, and contribution opportunities from the ACLJ.