Metro Holding founder businessperson Galip Öztürk was arrested in Batumi, Georgia on May 31, on charges of “purchasing and possessing large quantities of drugs”.
In the statement made by the Georgia Chief Prosecutor's Office, it was stated that more than 5 kilos of cocaine was seized as a result of a 7-hour search in Galip Öztürk's home.
In the statement, "As a result of the search conducted in Öztürk's apartment in Batumi on May 31, within the framework of the investigation carried out by the Investigation Unit of the Georgian Ministry of Finance on allegations of tax evasion, forgery of documents and money laundering, 7 grams of cocaine were seized. On the same day, Galip Öztürk was arrested. Öztürk fled to Georgia, where he is a citizen, after he was sentenced to life imprisonment for instigating murder in Turkey.
Who is Galip Ozturk?
Galip Öztürk (born on April 19, 1965 in Ayvacık, Samsun) is a Georgian citizen, owner of Metro Group of Companies and the founding president of the “Turkish Bus Drivers Federation” founded in 2005.
Having learned in advance that the life sentence in the murder of Kuvvet Köseoğlu was upheld by the Supreme Court, he fled to Georgia in 2018.
Galip Öztürk's grandfather and elders settled in the Çarşamba region from Sürmene to the Russian advance in 1916. Öztürk, one of the five children of his family, was born in 1965 in Ayvacık as the son of İsmail Öztürk. After completing his primary education on Wednesday, he went to Istanbul when he was 13 and started working in a teahouse in Topkapı. Then he started business with a small tea shop in Topkapı bus station.
Later, he switched to bus transportation and in November 1992 he founded Metro Turizm. The company, which first started with three buses on the Istanbul-Ankara line, then started to grow rapidly. Öztürk was elected as the president of the International Anatolian and Thrace Bus Drivers Association in 2000. In the same year, the election of the chairman of the board of directors of Büyük İstanbul Bus İşletmeleri A.Ş. kazanwas. On January 4, 2005, he established the Turkish Bus Drivers Federation, which gathered 58 associations under its roof, and assumed the duty of founding chairman of this federation. Owning more than 40 companies and operating the Greater Istanbul Bus Terminal and the Kayseri Intercity Bus Terminal, Öztürk also owns the Samsun Yusuf Ziya Yılmaz Bus Terminal, Havza and Yeni Çarşamba terminals. Galip Öztürk, who was sentenced to life imprisonment and had to live illegally in Georgia, transferred the operation of the Great Istanbul Bus Terminal to IMM in 2019.
It has been decided to start negotiations for the sale of 5 percent of Metro Turizm Seyahat, a subsidiary of Metro Commercial and Financial Investments Holding, owned by Öztürk, to Ali Bayramoğlu.
Although Galip Öztürk was tried on 5 July 2003 with the crime of forming a profit-oriented crime organization, he was later released. While he added Van Et to his group in 2005, he sold Metro Turizm to Van Et in early 2009 to open it to the public. In April 2009, he was detained for alleged manipulation in the Istanbul Stock Exchange (ISE) and referred to the courthouse. However, he was later released pending trial. The same month, the transfer of Metro Turizm shares to Van Et Ticaret Investments, which also belongs to it, was approved by the Competition Board. In the last months of 2009, he was detained on the allegation that he had forced a businessman to sign a 2 million lira bill.
On February 29, 2012, Öztürk was arrested and sent to Metris Prison after being detained on charges of collecting checks and bills with threat, committing capital market crimes (manipulation) and using cocaine.
A lawsuit was filed by the Capital Markets Board by Galip Öztürk for allegedly manipulating the shares of Metro Petrol Tesisleri Company. Galip Öztürk was fined many times for his stock market transactions. Abdülkerim Emek, a former CMB member, resigned from his position in the Prime Ministry due to the case of being a member of a criminal organization.
Galip Öztürk was first sentenced to aggravated life imprisonment for alleged incitement to the murder of Kuvvet Köseoğlu. The court then converted Galip Öztürk's sentence to life imprisonment, taking into account his good conduct at the hearing.
At the hearing held on 19.04.2013, Galip Öztürk was released. After his life sentence was upheld, Galip Öztürk learned of the Supreme Court decision beforehand and fled to Georgia.
Galip Öztürk is married to Hülya Öztürk and has 4 daughters and 4 sons. He married Kristina Öztürk in Georgia and had 9 more children. The biological mothers of these children are different surrogate mothers. Galip Öztürk paid $24 for each child.