This story comes from Turkey. It is extraordinary, it has to be said. A shop assistant at an electronics store, a mild mannered man in appearance whose name is Ahmet Dilaver, was jailed for allegedly provoking a community cat to attack a female customer.
I use the word “allegedly” because even though he was charged, convicted and imprisoned for this crime it seems extraordinary that it happened. I’ve never heard of a person ordering a semi-domesticated cat to attack somebody. There is no doubt that the courts got this dramatically wrong. Look at the charming, placid cat!
It happened in January 2016 according to reports. The woman was returning to the electronic shop to pick up a repaired tablet computer. The repair had not been completed which no doubt irritated her. She became angry. One of the community cats was in the shop; a cat that they regularly petted inside the store.
The cat saw the woman becoming angry and moved towards her. The woman became angrier and sent the cat flying into the air with a kick. The cat retaliated by scratching her face.
The shop assistant was charged and convicted. He was sentenced to 2 months in prison for “reckless injury”! He appealed the decision but it was upheld. It appears that the court decided that Ahmet should be held responsible for the stray cat’s attack. It appears, however, that his jail sentence was “converted” into a 3000 Turkish lira fine.
“I didn’t provoke the cat against the woman. It was the woman who provoked him. Why do they punish me?”
There is no doubt in my mind, and I’m sure this applies to almost anybody else, that this man is innocent. It’s quite possible that the community cat was defending the man. The cat clearly visited the store regularly, was well-known and there was a friendship between Ahmet and the cat. The woman was an aggressor and it’s quite conceivable that the cat stepped in to defend him.
This would never had got to court in the UK or the USA. It is not a credible criminal case and the prosecution services would have thrown it out at conception. It demonstrates the huge differences in the criminal legal systems of Western and less well developed countries.
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