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Turkiye writer, son accused of fleeing after crash arrested in US

June 14, 2024 at 7:45 pm

Turkish novelist and poet, Eylem Tok [Social media]

US authorities, on Friday, arrested a Turkish author and her 17-year-old son wanted by Turkiye on charges that he was involved in a fatal car crash in Istanbul and then fled the country with the assistance of his mother, Reuters reports.

Turkish novelist and poet, Eylem Tok, and her son, Timur Cihantimur, are scheduled to appear in federal court in Boston following their arrest pursuant to an extradition request from Turkiye.

Their arrests were announced on the social media platform X by Turkish Justice Minister, Yilmaz Tunc, who said they were “captured in the United States in line with our extradition request.”

Their arrests came after Interpol, last month, granted Turkiye’s request to issue a red notice for both Tok and her son. A red notice is a request to law enforcement officials to locate and provisionally arrest a person, pending extradition.

Defence lawyers did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

According to prosecutors, the teenager was driving a Porsche on the night of 1 March when, while speeding around a corner, he crashed into a group of people with all-terrain vehicles. One person, Oguz Murat Aci, died, and four others were injured.

Prosecutors said the teenager immediately fled the scene after saying something like “my life is over”. Airport surveillance footage captured him and his mother both at an Egyptair ticket sales office three hours later, prosecutors said.

Tok bought both one-way tickets for a flight from Istanbul to Cairo, Egypt, and they continued on to the United States, landing in New York on 2 March, according to court papers.

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