Turkish Man Jailed for Murdering Pregnant Wife

Turkish Man Jailed for Murdering Pregnant Wife
A boat is seen at Butterfly Valley on Sept. 5, 2017 in Oludeniz, Turkey. (Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

A Turkish man has been sentenced to at least 30 years in prison for the murder of his pregnant wife who he pushed off a cliff.

Hakan Aysal, 41, shoved his 7-months-pregnant wife Semra Aysal, 32, off a cliff in southern Turkey in July 2018 reported news.com.au.

Aysal initially denied he killed his wife, but in a court hearing last week he pleaded insanity over the crime, which was rejected.

Aysal had lured his wife—who family members said feared heights—to the edge of a cliff 1,000 feet high, and pushed her off. The incident happened in a picturesque seaside area called Butterfly Valley.

Aysal had claimed life insurance money shortly after his wife’s death, but the claim was rejected when police started investigating what happened to his wife.

Recep Sahin, who was present the day of the incident and saw the couple, told the court in a previous hearing: “I stopped there to see the view of Kabak Bay with my family,” reported news.com.au.

“My daughter was filming the view with my phone, and the Aysal couple came down the slope at that moment,” Sahin said.

“We even joked, ‘Either this man will throw the woman off, or the woman will throw the man.’ There was no interaction between them.”

After the incident, he said that “We tried to get closer to the edge for a better look. Hakan did not come with us down there.”

Aysal was the sole beneficiary of his wife’s life insurance.

The victim’s older brother, Naim Yolcu, said in a previous hearing: “When we went to the Forensic Medicine Institute to get the body, Hakan was sitting in the car. My family and I were destroyed, but Hakan did not even appear sad.”

He added that strangely his sister had also taken out loans before dying. “My sister was always against taking out loans. However, after she died, we learned she had loans taken out by Hakan on behalf of my sister,” he said.

Aysal claimed he had been into mountain climbing and extreme sports since 2014. His social media account features photos of him at holiday spots and expensive hotels around Turkey.

When asked about the clause in his wife’s life insurance that made him the sole beneficiary, Aysal said: “I did not examine the policy closely. The banker arranged the paperwork. I just brought it to my wife to get it signed. I was not aware there was such an article.”

According to news.com.au, citing a Turkish NGO, 280 women were killed by men in Turkey in 2021, and 217 were found dead in suspicious circumstances.

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