In a retrial on Wednesday, the Istanbul High Court sentenced a TV preacher who was accompanied by women wearing very short dresses, whom he referred to as “kittens,” to 8,658 years in prison.
Adnan Oktar, a Muslim televangelist, hosted television shows while flanked by women dressed in cosmetics and very little clothing, preaching creationism and conservative ideals.
Last year, the 66-year-old was sentenced to 1,075 years in prison for crimes such as sexual assault, sexual abuse of children, fraud, and attempted political and military espionage. However, an appeals court reversed the decision.
According to the Anadolu news agency, during the retrial, the Istanbul High Criminal Court sentenced Oktar to 8,658 years in prison on a variety of counts, including sexual assault and deprivation of liberty. According to the agency, the court also sentenced ten more offenders to 8,658 years in prison.
Oktar, whom critics consider a cult leader, rose to prominence through his broadcasts on the internet A9 television station and was frequently chastised by Turkiye’s religious authorities. He was arrested in Istanbul in 2018 as part of an investigation by the city’s police financial crimes unit as part of a massive crackdown on his organization.