By Suleyman Elcin, Cihan Okur
ANKARA (AA) – Turkish security forces arrested a total of 61 suspects over their links to Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the group behind last year’s defeated coup, according to a police official.
The arrests came after prosecutors issued warrants for suspected FETO members, the office who asked not to be named due to restrictions on talking to the media, said.
In the southern Antalya province, police detained ten FETO suspects, all of them former police officers, as part of an investigation into the terrorist organization. Some of the suspects have been accused of using ByLock.
ByLock is an encrypted smartphone messaging app used by FETO members before and during last year's defeated coup attempt.
In a separate operation in the northern Amasya province, police also arrested two people for their alleged links to FETO.
In southeastern Gaziantep and Adiyaman provinces, another 49 people were taken into custody as part of an ongoing investigation into the terrorist group.
In addition, 35 people were convicted and jailed for being members of the FETO.
The High Criminal Court in the northern province of Samsun handed down one-and-half-year to seven-and-half years of jail terms to 34 people.
Separately, the High Criminal Court in the central province of Sivas also sentenced a lawyer to 6 years and 3 months in prison over his links to FETO.
FETO and Gulen orchestrated the July 15, 2016, defeated coup in Turkey, which martyred 250 people and left nearly 2,200 injured.
Ankara accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.