49 detained for alleged gang links

Forty-nine people, including well-known singers, actors and organizers, were detained yesterday in the Aegean province of İzmir on charges of involvement in illegal gang activity.

Forty-nine people, including well-known singers, actors and organizers, were detained yesterday in the Aegean province of İzmir on charges of involvement in illegal gang activity.

The suspects face allegations of making threats of violence, using a deadly weapon and engaging in corrupt business practices.

The detainees allegedly all asked for help from Muzaffer Köse, a former outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) informant and alleged gang head. Köse was allegedly protecting the detainees from the threats they faced.

According to allegations, actor Erkan Petekkaya asked for Köse’s help after being blackmailed by a gang who claimed they had obscene images of him.

Singer Haluk Levent allegedly turned to Köse when he could not repay money he borrowed from a pawnbroker.

The allegations also claim organizer Ahmet San appealed to Köse when he could not evict his tenants from a nightclub in İzmir.

All detainees were taken to Istanbul to testify, according to Doğan news agency.

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