Turkey - 05

Turkey: The Karamehmet Saga: Energy Tycoon Tries to Make Peace with Erdogan

Turkey’s second-richest man a half-decade ago, Mehmet Emin Karamehmet’s businesses have been embattled since 2013, following political disputes with the government. In 2013 his BMC automotive company was confiscated and in late 2015 he was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment for embezzling 417mn Turkish liras (around $142mn) during his tenure as the CEO of Pamukbank. The specific charges indicate that as CEO, Karamehmet had lent back-to-back credit to his personal enterprise, Cukurova Group, transferring the total sum over an extended period of time. The main deposit-protection regulator that identified and indicted Karamehmet, the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF), launched a similar inquiry into the Cukurova Group in 2013, citing unpaid tax debt.

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