Turkish court convicts four, acquits six others in yacht prostitution scandal

Mon Apr 18 2011, 10:09 AM

The four received 20 months in prison for running a charter with prostitutes on MV Savarona, the Turkish state yacht

A case in Turkey involving organised sex-for-hire charters aboard one of the world's largest yachts ended last week. State prosecutors charged 10 suspects with running a prostitution ring aboard the 124m MV Savarona.

According to the Canadian press, six of the defendants were acquitted and four others convicted. But those convicted were given a suspended sentence of 20 months in prison for “good behaviour”.

Among those acquitted was Kazakh businessman Tevfik Arif, who was charged with financing the sex party. The prostitutes were earlier deported back to Russia and the Ukraine.

The 10 had been on trial since December. They had been accused of "facilitating" and "encouraging" prostitution on board the 408ft superyacht. The yacht, owned by the government but leased to a private firm for chartering purposes, was once owned by modern Turkey's founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. Shortly after the news broke, goverment officials said the yacht would be turned into a permanent historic museum.