(Sabah Newspaper, 18 November 2013)
Sold a bill of goods...
In Izmir, Gurbet Uzun (36) met accountant Erol Ture in a
coffee house in 2006. Promising to get insurance for Uzun,
Ture asked Uzun for his identity card. Shortly afterwards,
Ture said "your insurance is all set, you have to sign." and
he took Uzun to a notary.
Grade school graduate Uzun signed a number of documents
without reading them but, in any event, he was glad to have
finally gotten insurance so he thanked Ture. However, a while
later Uzun was shocked when he began getting payment notices
and tax bills mailed to his home address.
Uzun took the notices and tax bills to Ture asking "what's with
these debt notices? What's going to happen?" In response, Ture
said "Come on, let's take care of it all." So Ture took Uzun to
the notary again and had him sign more documents.
As a result, Uzun has been shuttling from court to court for seven years.
Because 13 companies were set up in his name he has a debt of nearly 20
million TL and he has been slapped with a 12 prison sentence by the Izmir
court for allegedly forging a receipt. Uzun has objected to the rulings and
the case files have gone to a higher court. But if that court approves the
Izmir court's decision Uzun will have to serve 12 years in prison.
A (bewildered and) jobless Uzun explained that "if I really had all
these companies I wouldn't be in this situation. I can't even pay the 30 TL
electric bill for my home. I'm not working and my green card (for Turkish
government social services) has been cancelled because of the lawsuits.
I can't get any help from the district chief's office either."