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New Criminal Case VS Irakli Okruashvili to Be Discussed by Tbilisi City Court

October 11, 2011

News Agency “Pirveli”

The Tbilisi City Court will discuss a new case against former defense minister of Georgia Irakli Okruashvili. Representatives of the Georgian Party told the news agency Pirveli that the court will investigate the case though the date of essential discussion of the case has not been fixed yet.

As for new case details, which could have been obtained during the investigation process, nothing is known about them.

Investigation process against the detained supporters of Irakli Okruashvili has already finished. All of them signed plea-agreement.

It is noteworthy that after essential hearing of the case is finished and if Okruashvili is found guilty, Georgia can repeatedly petition to France (former defense minister received political shelter there) to extradite Irakli Okruashvili to the homeland.

As for the lawyer, the Georgian Party has not hired an attorney for Okruashvili and it is not known who will defend his rights at the court.

As soon as new accusation against Okruashvili was published, the member of the political council of the Georgian Party Erosi Kitsmarishvili made statement about the lawyer.

He said the accusation against Okruashvili was absurd, so the party was not going to hire an attorney for this particular case.

Thus, supposedly, the state funded lawyer will represent the former minister at the court.

As for other 17 supporters of Okruashvili, who were also detained concerning this particular case, the prosecutor’s office signed plea-agreement with them. More precisely, Iluridze and Saakashvili, accused of creation of illegal armed formations, were released from the courtroom by the Judge Davit Jugeli because of their cooperation with the investigation. Other detainees were sentenced to various penalties.

Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia accused the former defense minister of setting up and leadership of illegal armed formations on June 28. The Tbilisi City Court foresaw the fact that Okruashvili had already been convicted and was sought by red circular of the InterPol, and imposed pretrial imprisonment on him on June 30. Consequently, Okruashvili is sought under one more article – Article 223 Part I of the Criminal Code of Georgia.

We kindly remind you that about two months ago, officers of the Counter-Intelligence Department of the MIA detained 15 supporters of Irakli Okruashvili; later all of them signed plea-agreements.

 MIA released video and audio-recordings of confession statements of the detainees. One of them Giorgi Sabashvili confessed that on May 22, 2011 Irakli Okruashvili was in Zemo Artsevi village (currently out of Georgian jurisdiction) and intended to secretly move to the Georgia’s controlled territory together with 200 Russian riot police officers; and a group of 20 Georgian armed people was waiting for him on the Georgian territory.

Sibashvili added that the group intended to occupy checkpoint of Georgian police; so his supporters were ordered to thoroughly investigate the situation in Georgian police checkpoints.

Afterwards, they intended to attack the buildings of Georgian riot police and Shida Kartli regional police department and finally they wanted to enter Tbilisi and overthrow the government under force.

Later, Okruashvili categorically denied the above-listed accusations in one of his TV-interviews.