Turkish police detain dozens over exam 'irregularities'
A total of 616 suspects, who were allegedly involved in a fraud case in a 2010 nationwide civil service recruitment exam, are all current civil service servants on active duty, the prosecutor's office in Ankara said Anadolu Agency reported.
The news came after an Ankara prosecutor ordered Monday the detention of 82 people for being allegedly involved in infiltrating and cheating in the Public Personnel Selection Examination, known by the initials KPSS, held in 2010 in Turkey.
Police said that out of the 82, at least 60 suspects were detained, while three of them were released for being pregnant or on ground for taking care of their babies. Ten others were abroad, while the search for around nine others, who remain at large, continued, police said.
Suspects are accused of being members of a criminal organization, forging official documents, committing fraud, destroying evidence and abusing power.
The Public Personnel Selection Examination is a test taken by civil service candidates.
In 2010, there were 3,227 people who got 100 or more questions right in a certain section of the examination. The exam itself is composed of 120 questions, the prosecutor's office said.
Around 350 people answered 120 out of 120 questions correctly in the exam. Strangely, out of these 350 people, 70 of them were found to be couples, while 52 others were found to be living either in the same apartment or on the same street in the same neighborhood.
An expert committee, formed under the Ankara public prosecutor's office, was investigating more than 1,500 people, suspected of having received exam answers beforehand, while "they did not show the same success in previous examinations."
The expert committee also looked into exam booklets, where some of the questions were not answered by the suspects or some questions were corrected.
"It is awkward how that many people could receive a full score in an exam of such a high degree of difficulty," the committee's report said.
The operation was launched in 19 provinces, including Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, Eskisehir, Sakarya, Isparta, Sivas, Samsun and Bursa. Those detained in other provinces were sent to Ankara for questioning.