Turk gets bond

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Turkish native and possible U.S. citizen, Mustafa Turan Buyukaydin, was released from the Dallas County Jail today on bond.

Unfortunately for him, he’s still in jail. Buyukaydin was held by the Imigration and Naturalization Service, and is possibly being transported to a federal facility in New Orleans, according to his defense attorney Corky Hawthorne.

Buyukaydin was arrested on charges of criminal possession of a forged instrument in late April.

Email newsletter signup

According to the district attorney’s office, Buyukaydin was attempting to illegally gain a drivers’ license in Dallas County with a fake Social Security Card.

“Based on how I’ve been following the War on Terror, this guy fits the classic mode,” assistant district attorney Joseph Fitzpatrick said in early May.

Buyukaydin’s bond hearing was held then.

His attorney, Jeffrey Robinson, attempted to secure bond at that time. Fitzpatrick objected, saying Buyukaydin could be a danger.

“It could be a violation of the Patriot Act,” Fitzpatrick said. “There are federal implications.”

Hawthorne, Buyukadin’s other attorney, disagrees.

“This guy is not a terrorist,” Hawthorne said. “What he had was a copy of his Social Security card, and he was trying to get a driver’s license. His wallet was stolen. He’s been in jail ever since.”

Hawthorne believes Buyukadin’s arrest and subsequent jail-time are the result of paranoia.

“He’s a roofer,” Hawthorne said.

Hawthorne was retained by a group of Turkish roofers based in Montgomery, who worked with Buyukaydin.

Hawthorne also says Buyukaydin is a U.S. citizen, and provided the copy of a marriage certificate issued in Virginia as proof.

According to the copyt, Buyukaydin was married to Leatrice Lavonne Brown, in Norfolk Virginia, on December 10, 2002.

Hawthorne has tried unsuccessfully to contact Buyukaydin’s wife. According to Hawthorne, the couple has been separated for some time.

Hawthorne also says Buyukaydin has been a resident of the United States for at least a decade.

Hawthorne also provided a reference letter written to Chase Bozeman, the head of the Alabama division of Homeland Security.

The letter was written by Mahmet N. Cilinger, a project manager with Yoksel Proje, a Turkish engineering firm.

The firm, according to the letter, has several joint ventures with the Louis Berger International Group, Washington, D.C.

Cilinger, in his letter, says he’s known Buyakaydin and his family for 16 years.

“I can assure you that M. Turan Buyukaydin is not a criminal and he has no relations with any terrorist or illegal groups,” Cilinger’s letter says.

The Selma Times-Journal contacted Chase Bozeman regarding the case.

“I can’t comment on the case,” he said.