00:15 GMT24 June 2021
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    It was surveillance camera footage that helped Turkish police apprehend the alleged mastermind behind the assassination of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov in 2016, local media report.

    Turkish police say they apprehended Sagin Sogut, allegedly part of the plot to kill Karlov, thanks to CCTV camera footage, according to Turkey's Anadolu news agency.

    Karlov was shot December 19, 2016, during the opening ceremony of a Russia-themed photo exhibition, by former Turkish police officer Mevlut Altintas. Altintas was shot on sight by Turkish police.

    According to Anadolu, Sogut, who is believed to be a high-ranking member of what Turkey calls the FETO terrorist organization, fled immediately after the assassination. On February 26, he visited a bank in Ankara. The CCTV footage reportedly shows Sogut approaching the bank, making a phone call and entering the building. Security personnel noticed Sogut's worried appearance, as he constantly looked at the cameras, the report says.

    During the subsequent investigation, the Ankara police department's anti-terror division studied the camera footage on the order of the Turkish Prosecutor's Office, and managed to trace Sogut via various cameras located on the streets of Ankara. Sogut was eventually apprehended on April 5, 2018.

    The Prosecutor's Office believes that it was Sogut's influence that shaped Altintas's radical views. They reportedly think Sogut ordered Altintas to kill Karlov, planned the entire operation and then erased Altintas' emails.

    A total of seven people have been arrested in connection with the assassination, including three former police officers. The Turkish authorities blame the Gulenist Movement, which it denotes as "FETO" (the Turkish abbreviation for Gülenist Terror Organisation), led by cleric Fethullah Gulen, for the assassination. Gulen denies all allegations.


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    CCTV camera, footage, investigation, assassination, FETO, Sahin Sogut, Mevlut Mert Altintas, Andrei Karlov, Turkey, Russia, Ankara
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