09 May 2024


Fraud is one of the most frequently committed crimes in the Turkish Penal Code (TPC), and its prevalence has increased along with the development of communication tools. This crime occurs when a person deceives another person through fraudulent actions and obtains a benefit for themselves or someone else. Fraud is divided into two categories: simple fraud and aggravated fraud.

Simple Fraud

According to Article 157 of the TPC, a person who deceives another person through fraudulent actions, causing damage to that person or another, and obtains a benefit for themselves or someone else, shall be punished with imprisonment from one to five years and a judicial fine of up to five thousand days.

The following elements must be present for the crime of simple fraud to be constituted:

  • Fraudulent conduct: The perpetrator must resort to a trick to deceive or mislead the victim. Fraud, in its simplest definition, is a qualified lie.

  • Damage: The victim or someone else must suffer material or non-material damage as a result of the perpetrator's fraudulent actions.

  • Benefit: In return for the aforementioned damage, the perpetrator must also obtain a benefit for themselves or someone else.

Aggravated Fraud

The aggravated form of the crime of fraud is committed when the crime is committed in certain ways and with certain tools. The penalty for the aggravated form of the crime is imprisonment from three to ten years. In some aggravated cases, the lower limit of the penalty is four years. Some of the frequently encountered aggravated forms listed in this article are as follows:

  • Fraud committed by exploiting religious beliefs and feelings,

  • Fraud committed by taking advantage of a person's weakness of perception,

  • Fraud committed by using public institutions and organizations, public professional organizations, political parties, foundations or associations as tools,

  • Fraud committed to the detriment of public institutions and organizations,

  • Fraud committed by using information systems, banks or credit institutions as tools,

  • Fraud committed by taking advantage of the facilities provided by the press and broadcasting media,

  • Fraud committed for the purpose of obtaining the opening of a credit that should not be allocated by banks or other credit institutions,


The crime of fraud is a crime that can cause serious material and non-material damage to victims. Therefore, the simple and aggravated forms of the crime of fraud are regulated in the TPC in order to deter this crime. The penalty for the crime of fraud is determined based on whether the crime is simple or aggravated, the manner in which the crime is committed, the value of the property obtained, and other factors.

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