Turk gets 25 years for killing Serbian basketball fan

A Turkish court on Monday sentenced a man to 25 years in prison for the fatal stabbing of a Red Star Belgrade basketball fan from Serbia, media reports said. 

The Istanbul court originally sentenced 53-year-old Kadri Aktas to life imprisonment for the November 2014 attack in the Turkish city but reduced the sentence to 25 years for good conduct during his trial, news agency Dogan reported. 

Six other suspects in the case were acquitted, Dogan said. Aktas’s legal team said he would appeal the ruling.

Serbian Marko Ivkovic, 25, was knifed in the heart during clashes involving hundreds of people outside a sports hall in Istanbul ahead of a game between Galatasaray and Red Star of Belgrade.

Aktas and six others were subsequently arrested after the riot, in which stones and flares were thrown.

A lawyer for the Ivkovic family said they had expected a life sentence while Bojana Jankelic, Ivkovic’s sister, called on the court to punish the others “complicit in the crime”.

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic at the time voiced “outrage over the monstrous murder” and demanded the perpetrators be punished.

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