Prosecutor’s Office Makes a Decision to Review Verdicts of Two Political Prisoners and A Former Law Enforcement Officer

2017-07-12 12:30:23

Department to Investigate Offenses Committed in Course of Legal Proceedings of the Chief Prosecutor’s  Office of Georgia has made a decision to review unlawfully rendered guilty verdicts in the cases of political prisoners, Bakhva Sturua and Beka Petriashvili, and that of former law enforcement officer Vasil Kvernadze.
Prior to the aforementioned decision, a repeated comprehensive and objective investigation had been conducted into the case, new witnesses had been interrogated, dozens of investigative and procedural actions had been carried out, case files had been studied, new evidence and facts had been collected, whereupon the investigation obtained the irrefutable evidence in each case, which completely excluded the facts of the persons having committed the crimes they had been convicted of.
On May 21, 2011, Bakhva Sturua was driving a motor vehicle with his friend as a passenger near Avlabari subway station, in order to take part into anti-government demonstration, when they were stopped by MIA Didude-Chughureti District Police officers, who completely illegally arrested Bakhva Sturua and planted narcotic substance Subutex on him, for the purposes to convict him later. The only motive for their action was that Bakhva Sturua had been a member of an oppositionist political movement and actively took part in current protests.
On December 01, 2011, a guilty verdict of Bakhva Sturua was rendered on the basis of fabricated evidence, and for illegal purchase an storage of narcotic substances he was sentenced to deprivation of liberty for a term of 8 years and 6 months. He could only be released in January 2013, when the Parliament of Georgia recognized him as a political prisoner.  
Another victim of political persecution of law enforcement officers became Beka Petriashvili, leader of youth branch of an oppositionist political party, for whom the police staged hooliganism and arrested him for the purposes to remove him from political processes.
Specifically, In July 2011, Beka Petriaashvili was arrested by MIA Didude-Chughureti District Police officers near his house on Tsereteli Avenue, for alleged disruption of public order and resisting arrest, and fabricated and fictitious evidence was collected against him – three perjures were interviewed. The repeated investigation revealed, that one of the so-called witness was not even present nearby the arrest site. In this regard, Department to Investigate Offenses Committed in Course of Legal Proceedings of the Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia has prosecuted one of the witness K.J. for its perjury against Beka Petriashvili. Other evidence that rules out Beka Petriashvili having committed the alleged crime have been collected.
On December 06, 2011, Beka Petriashvili was tried on the basis of fabricated evidence and was sentenced to deprivation of liberty for a term of three years. His release became possible only after he was granted a status of political prisoner.
As for former law enforcement officer Vasil Kvernadze, investigation was accusing him of abuse of official powers. According to this allegation, while carrying out an investigative action – search of the house of a defendant, he illegally took a large monetary sum in 2009. Investigation conducted anew, revealed new circumstances completely unknown before, which rules out the guilt of Valist Kvernadze and establishes the fact of that time certain employees of the MIA General Inspection supervising the investigation having interests in his illegal conviction.
Evidence obtained in the course of repeated investigation confirmed that the criminal acts of which the convicts had been deemed culpable never occurred, therefore, Prosecutor’s Office has issued decrees regarding violation of convicts’ rights, on the basis whereof we apply to Tbilisi Court of Appeals to review judgements due to the newly revealed circumstances.
The process initiated by the new Department created in the Office of the Chief Prosecutor of Georgia concerning the review of convictions handed down against wrongfully convicted persons and reinstatement of their violated rights, shall have an irreversible nature. For the time being, due to newly revealed circumstances, Department to Investigate Offenses Committed in the Course of Legal Proceedings of the Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia has applied to the Court of Appeals regarding the cases of 27 convicts, 9 persons wherefrom have already been acquitted.