Former Cumhuriyet reporter Pelin Ünker on Tuesday received a one year, one month and 15 day sentence and was ordered to pay 8,860 Turkish lira for exposing offshore companies that allegedly belonged to Parliament Speaker Binali Yıldırım’s sons in the tax-haven island of Malta.
Canan Coşkun, another Cumhuriyet reporter, announced the verdict on Twitter, stating that the sentence was not suspended. The ruling will be appealed in a higher court.
Ünker had reported on Yıldırım’s sons’ ownership of offshore companies situated in a tax haven that were revealed in 2015 by the Panama Papers, the work of investigative journalists who exposed the corrupt business ties of politicians and businesspeople with tax havens.
According to the Panama Papers then-Prime Minister Yıldırım’s sons Erkam and Bülent Yıldırım owned five companies in Malta: South Seas Shipping N.V., Nova Warrior Limited, Dertel Shipping Limited, Hawke Bay Marine Co