Celal Afşar, a 86-year-old businessman who has been in pre-trial detention over his alleged ties to the Gulen movement since July, has his wife, a long-term bed patient, passed away.

Media reported on Saturday that Feride Afsar died very recently.

Mr Afşar was first detained along with his daughter and son-in-law were as part of an investigation launched by the Niğde Prosecutor’s office early July, this year. He was put behind bars after police kept him under custody for 5 days.

“Celal Avsar is 85 years old man with several medical problems. He was kept in detention for 5 days. He was transferred to the prison in Nigde along with his daughter only yesterday. His wife is bed-ridden at death’s door. It is immoral and cruel to jail such an old guy. It is against human rights,” main opposition Republican Peoples’ Party (CHP) deputy Sezgin Tanrikulu tweeted when the businessman was first detained.

During his first court appearance in August, Afsar demanded his release saying: “I did not escape abroad. I had to take care of my wife.” He said he had no time to stop by the prosecutor’s office due to his wife’s illness. Turkey Purge has yet to confirm the details of Mrs. Feride’s problems.

The court overseeing his case refused to release the businessman back then.