big brother links to original article
(Sabah Newspaper, 19 October 2011)
Celal Topçu is a 32 year-old bus driver in Kocaeli Gebze. His older brother
Cemal Topçu (50), who lives in Ardahan, was stopped by police on the
night of 27 January and found to have an alcohol level of 0.75 promil. Police
wanted to seize Cemal's license but he said that he left both it and his identity
card at home and gave the police Celal's license number instead. The two
policemen processed Celal's number by attaching an absentee penalty
against his license for using a vehicle under the influence of alcohol.
A week later, without any knowledge of this, Celal was taking passengers
to Istanbul when his license was confiscated by police at a checkpoint.
Although he said there had been a mistake it was all in vain and Celal, who
has been a driver for 14 years, lost his job because his license was seized.
Subsequently, when he couldn't pay his debts his house was foreclosed.
When Celal, the father of two children, learned what had happened he
filed a complaint with the Ardahan Public Prosecutor against his brother
and the two policemen. The prosecutor determined that there was no
cause to penalize the police for the charge of 'falsifying an official document'.
However, a suit was filed agains Cemal Topçu for 'putting traffic safety
in jeopardy' and 'lying during the completion of an official document.'
With the prosecutor's decision the monetary fine against Celal was lifted
but as long as the suit continues Celal cannot reclaim his license. Celal
stated that his life has been turned upside down because of the lack of
responsibility shown by the police. Continuing, Celal said that 'my older
brother doesn't have a license so he got scared and gave my number.
The police penalized my license based on a false statement. Even though
I'm innocent I've lost my job. I've been jobless for eight months. Sanctions
have been brought on me because of my debts. I don't have money to
buy a house.'