Kayseri 4th High Penal Court sentenced lawyers HŞ and HHA 6 years 3 months prison sentence with the charge to be the member of the armed terrorist organization only for allegedly downloading the Bylock i-message app.
One of the victim lawyer said that despite the digital forensic report presents that I have never downloaded the BYLOCK secure i-message application, the court sentenced me 6 years 3 months, I wish hell for them.
The US-based think tank Freedom House, which has listed Turkey in his newly released report among the countries in which Internet freedoms are restricted most, stated that tens of thousands of Turkish citizens have been arbitrarily detained for their alleged use of the encrypted communications app ByLock.
Stating that the past year featured an unprecedented increase in the number of prosecutions and detentions of Turkish citizens for their online activities, Freedom House’s report said that “Legal and technical experts have disputed the government’s claim that the (ByLock) app was primarily used by members of the Gülen movement, pointing to its wide availability and popularity in 41 countries. It was once available to download at no cost on the app stores of Apple and Google, until it was removed by the developer. Turkish officials claim that the app was designed by a senior member of the Gülen movement. Experts believe that Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MİT) hacked a ByLock server located in Lithuania, which listed its hundreds of thousands of users in an unencrypted form.”
“Despite a lack of evidence, and the arbitrary nature of the blanket arrests, numerous users have been deemed guilty by association for simply downloading the app. In the month of October 2016 alone, arrest warrants were issued for 404 individuals for allegedly using ByLock, including members of the police and judiciary,” said the report and added that “The ByLock controversy has also ensnared members of the human rights community. Taner Kılıç, the Turkey chair of Amnesty International, was detained in June 2017, and the only known evidence in his case was the allegation that he had used ByLock, which he has denied.”