Talk of More Shooters in Hrant Dink’s Murder

ISTANBUl (Bianet)–The secret witness in Dink’s murder trial says there were two more people together with Ogun Samast and Osman Hayal at the murder scene. He identifies the third person as Yasin Hayal and claimes that he shot Dink from behind.

The number of suspects in the murder of Hrant Dink has become 20. After the secret witness of the case identified Osman Hayal as the person who was next to murder suspect Ogun Samast at the time of the murder, a lawsuit was filed against him for “participating in a murder” and “being a member in a terrorist organization.”

The authorities combined Osman Hayal’s case with the main case in Istanbul. The next hearing will be held at Istanbul’s 14th High Criminal Court on January 26, 2009.

According to the indictment that was penned by prosecutors Selim Berna Altay and Fikret Secen on October 21, a secret witness claims he/she saw two more people together with murder suspect Ogun Samast and Osman Hayal on the day of the murder.

Osman Hayal had denied in his first statement that was taken in Trazon on January 25 that he was in Istanbul, “thinking anything other statement would be misunderstood.” He later accepted, when taken into custody in Trabzon the second time on August 20, that he had given a false statement.

Those close to Osman Hayal admit he was in Istanbul between January 13, 2007 and January 19, 2007 for the purpose of getting a job.

According to the information in the indictment, Osman Hayal got on a Metro Tourism bus to Trabzon at the Harem Bus Terminal in Istanbul about one hour fifteen minutes after the murder at 15:00.

According to secret witness’ statement given eleven days after the murder, he was coming from the direction of Mecidiyekoy when he saw Dink leaving the bank and walking towards where the office of Agos is. Next he saw a person with dark curly hair approach him to talk for three to five seconds with Dink, touching him during the conversation between them. The last thing the witness saw was two people approaching both from the front and the back and shooting him. Ogun Samast was the one approaching from the front and Yasin Hayal from the back. The fourth person was Osman Hayal and all of them were standing in front of the bank.

In his statement given to the chief prosecutor on August 23, 2008, the secret witness had claimed he had seen Osman Hayal among the citizens who had gathered that the scene of the crime after the murder, trying to cross the street. The last time he had seen him was when he had looked back with a smile on his face and then disappeared.

The indictment states that there are contradictions in the statement given by the secret witness. Yasin Hayal, whom the witness had identified as one of the people shooting Hrant Dink, was in Trabzon at the time of the murder according to the witness statemen’s. Moreover, according to the expert reports there was only one gun. Also whereas there were three people according to the first statement, there were four people according to the second one.

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