An Islamic televangelist and sex cult leader was sentenced by a Turkish court to 8,658 years in prison following a re-trial. He was found guilty for running a decades-old cult whose members were accused of crimes ranging from sexual assault to blackmail, money laundering, and espionage.
The 60-year-old Adnan Oktar, known mainly by the pseudonym Harun Yahya, became famous by presenting a show on an online channel in which he appeared surrounded by young, half-naked girls, whom he called “kittens”.
Arrested in July 2018, he was sentenced to 8,658 years in prison on charges including sexual assault, identity theft, and deprivation of liberty, according to Turkey’s official Anadolu news agency.
The same sentence was imposed on ten co-defendants, members of his organisation.
Oktar was originally sentenced in January 2021 to 1,075 years in prison, before the verdict was overturned by an appeals court.
Abroad, Oktar became famous after publishing an “Atlas of Creation” in which he rejected evolutionary theories.