Citizen fined for bridge he did not cross .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:none; color:#000000;} .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink:hover { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:underline; color:#990000;} MANİSA - A tractor belonging to 35-year-old farmer Ertan Açıkbaş, from Manisa’s Saruhanlı district, has been fined for not paying the toll at Istanbul’s Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge despite having never been to Istanbul his whole life.

Living in Saruhanlı’s Tirkeş village, Açıkbaş’s 45 S 7960 licensed tractor was fined for crossing the Faith Sultan Mehmet bridge in 2005, according to a citation sent by the Ministry of Transportation Directorate of Highways 17th Regional Department Main Control Center Chief Engineering office.

Never been to Istanbul
Saying he had never been to Istanbul, and certainly never cd the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge, Açıkbaş said, "I was shocked when the citation arrived. It states that on August 14, 2005 I had cd the bridge at 00.26 in the morning without paying the toll."

The fine totals YTL 44 and must be paid within 15 working days.

"I have never been to Istanbul in my life, and besides going to Istanbul from Manisa with my tractor would take at least two days."

Saying he had applied for permits within the necessary departments and that he would refuse to pay the fine, he explained, "I will not pay, not because of the YTL 44 but as a reaction to this absurdity."

"I am still shocked. This might have happened if the license plate was read wrong or if the car that passed had false plates," he said. "I am not guilty here."