Turkish Police Search Villa of Slain Saudi Journalist Khashoggi

Turkish Police Search Villa of Slain Saudi Journalist Khashoggi

Turkish Police Search Villa of Slain Saudi Journalist Khashoggi

Local reports state one villa near the town of Termal, in the Yalova province, before widening the search to cover a neighbouring house.

In a statement, the Istanbul prosecutor said the first villa is owned by a Saudi man who had spoken to one of the murder suspects on October 1.

The prosecutor added this information was the reason given to search the building.

Turkish authorities say a team of 15 Saudi officials were sent to kill Khashoggi, who was 59, but Riyadh insists the assassination team conducted a rogue operation.

Police used sniffer dogs to search the garden of the villa and the nearby wooded area, according to Reuters cameramen at the scene. The prince has been touring Arab countries and presenting a calm front despite global criticism sparked by Khashoggi's murder.

Turkish police have already searched the consulate and consul general's residence during the investigation they have been carrying out on the case.

Turkey: Police search Yalova villa in Khashoggi murder case
Jamal Khashoggi: police search villa in Turkish town

The contents of the gruesome recording allegedly prove that Khashoggi was grabbed, drugged and dismembered with a bone saw.

Turkish media reported he is a millionaire close to the Saudi royal family. Turkish officials have detailed what they say is evidence of Saudi planning - including the scouting of locations where Khashoggi's body could be dumped - as well as extensive attempts by Saudi agents to cover up the crime.

The body of Khashoggi remains missing. The journalist disappeared after entering the consulate in Istanbul in early October to acquire marriage papers.

Riyadh initially denied knowledge of Khashoggi's disappearance, then offered contradictory explanations. The whereabouts of his body are still unknown.

The fallout from Khashoggi's death has put substantial pressure on crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, the country's ruler, who has mounted a widespread and expensive public relations campaign in the West to portray himself as a moderate reformer.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that the killing was premeditated and that it was ordered by the "highest levels" of the Saudi government.

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