Turkey urges US to drop case against gold trader Reza Zarrab

Turkish President Recep Erdogan claims the case against Zarrab is politically motivated and ultimately intended to bolster US-based dissident Fethullah Gulen, who seeks to overthrow Erdogan's government.

by

    A Turkish gold trader charged with conspiring to evade US sanctions against Iran will not go on trial in New York this week.

    Reza Zarrab dropped out of sight in the two months leading up to his scheduled trial.

    However, there is widespread speculation that Zarrab has flipped and is now cooperating with the prosecution. He was abruptly released from prison in early November and his whereabouts are publically unknown.

    The US lawyer says he remains in federal custody. And that has led to speculation that he entered the witness protection programme.

    This has prompted Turkey's prime minister to suggest Zarrab has reached a plea deal with US authorities.

    President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey maintains this is a politically motivated prosecution intended to discredit and ultimately overthrow his government on behalf of Fethullah Gulen, an Islamic leader who lives in Pennsylvania.

    Al Jazeera's Shihab Rattansi reports from Washington.


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    From Cameroon to US-Mexico border: 'We saw corpses along the way'

    'We saw corpses along the way'

    Kombo Yannick is one of the many African asylum seekers braving the longer Latin America route to the US.