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Turkish Banker Asked His Country to Intervene in U.S. Case

  • Atilla to be sentenced next month after January conviction
  • Banker’s mom writes to judge asking for lighter prison term
Halk Bank

Photographer: Kerem Uzel/Bloomberg

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As a Turkish banker accused of aiding Iranian sanctions evasion was preparing to go to trial last year, his lawyers asked the Republic of Turkey to seek immunity for him.

The request wasn’t granted in full, defense attorney Victor Rocco said in a court filing Monday. Instead, the Turkish Embassy sent a “diplomatic note” to the U.S. State Department that stopped short of a formal request that the banker, Mehmet Hakan Atilla, be granted immunity, Rocco said. Atilla ultimately went to trial, was convicted in January and faces life in prison when he’s sentenced next month.