3 others accused of using FETO-linked messaging app released on probation
A total of 20 ex-soldiers, including military officers, were remanded in custody Saturday over their alleged use of a messaging app linked to the July 15 coup plot, according to a judicial source.
The suspects are among 23 people previously arrested by the Istanbul prosecutors as part of an operation launched against the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) and its leader Fetullah Gulen, the mastermind behind the failed July 15 coup attempt, according to Turkish authorities.
All were charged with attempting to overthrow the constitutional order and being members of an armed terrorist group. While 20 of those were remanded in custody after facing the court, three others were released on probation.
The suspects are accused of using the ByLock mobile app, a suspected means of communication for FETO members.
The app is believed to have been cracked by Turkish security agencies before the coup, prompting the plotters to switch to the WhatsApp messaging service but not before tens of thousands of FETO suspects were identified.
FETO is also accused of carrying out a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.