Andrew Brunson, the American-born pastor who was charged with espionage against Turkey and held in custody for two years, has been released and is free to leave the country.
A Turkish court on Friday, 12 October, convicted the Evangelical Presbyterian pastor on terrorism and espionage charges related to the failed 2016 coup against Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. The court sentenced Brunson to more than three years of prison time, but released him on account of Brunson’s time already served in detention and good behavior.
Facing up to 35 years in prison if convicted, Brunson flatly denied all charges. After being held in a number of different detention facilities since his arrest in October 2016, Brunson, 50, was assigned to house arrest in July of this year.