reading time: 4 min.

Former Private Secretary Released on Bail in Fake Diploma Case

Former Private Secretary Released on Bail in Fake Diploma Case

In the investigation into the "fake diploma" at the Cyprus Health and Social Sciences University (CHSSU), former private secretary Muhittin Özsağlam, who was arrested, was released on bail today.

Publish Date: 01/03/24 13:25
reading time: 4 min.
Former Private Secretary Released on Bail in Fake Diploma Case
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At the Nicosia District Court today, findings obtained during the 2-day detention period were presented by the investigating police officer, stating that the suspect had been arrested on February 27 on charges of "forging documents, circulating forged documents, obtaining money by deception, and obtaining illicit income." The investigation officer reminded that during the examination of the records, it was revealed that Muhittin Özsağlam was graduated from the Psychology Department of the CHSSU Faculty of Social and Humanities Sciences by showing that he had completed the required 61 courses successfully at the time he registered with the university.

The investigation officer also noted that the diploma, obtained irregularly, was circulated after being approved by the Ministry of Education, and due to the increase in the salary scale, the suspect had earned a total of 61,243 TL to date.

Regarding the suspect's statement that he was exempt from some courses due to being a graduate of open education and did not take exams for the remaining 10% of the courses, and that he completed these courses by doing the assignments given by S.G., the University Director, and shareholders, the investigation officer shared his findings. The officer mentioned that there were no students named Muhittin Özsağlam among the faculty members and that S.G. was not authorized to teach in the Psychology Department due to his academic background being in finance.

During the investigation, statements were taken from 10 people, and it was indicated that some of the courses for which Muhittin Özsağlam was considered successful were not available during the relevant period. It was also determined through an investigation conducted by YÖDAK that there was no exemption due to the transcript and the courses he took in the associate degree program.

The investigation officer stated that the suspect's graduation diploma and transcript were prepared by the Student Affairs Office upon the written and verbal instructions of S.G., the University Director, and shareholders.

It was also shared that according to the university records, the suspect made a payment of 7,500 TL, but he needed to make an additional payment of 11,250 TL for graduation, which was not recorded.

Regarding the suspect's place of work, the investigation is ongoing, and it was revealed that the suspect received a civil servant salary from the Prime Ministry, but it was orally stated that he was assigned to the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, although it was said from the Ministry that no one with this name worked there.

The investigation officer also stated that the suspect continued to perform his duties as a private secretary without being appointed during his tenure.

The suspect's lawyer, Eylem Şerifoğlu, argued that appointments in the public sector are in writing, stating that Muhittin Özsağlam continued to work at the Prime Ministry as a private secretary from the day he started.

The investigation officer stated that the period during which the suspect could affect the investigation had ended and requested that the suspect be released on bail under conditions deemed appropriate by the court.

Judge Zehra Yalkut Bilgeç decided that Muhittin Özsağlam should be released on bail with a cash guarantee of 100,000 TL, the signing of 2 promissory notes worth 750,000 TL each, a travel ban, seizure of travel documents, and a weekly reporting condition. Muhittin Özsağlam will be tried without arrest.

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