Office of the Chief Prosecutor Filed Charges Against M. Saakashvili and T. Janashia over the Embezzlement of GEL 8 837 461 Public Funds

2014-08-13 12:03:20

Today, on 13 August 2014, the Office of the Chief Prosecutor of Georgia announced charges against Mikheil Saakashvili, the former President of Georgia, and Teimuraz Janashia, the former Head of the Special State Protection Service, related to the embezzlement of State funds in large quantities (GEL 8 837 461). The investigation conducted by the Office of the Chief Prosecutor has ascertained the following:
In February 2009, Mikheil Saakashvili invited the massage therapist Dorothy Stain, a.k.a. “Dr. Dot” to Georgia. The latter provided relevant services to Mikheil Saakashvili. Video footage depicting the visit of “Dr. Dot” to Georgia was leaked to the internet and, correspondingly, the public learned about her visit and the services provided to the President. It is worth noting that when entering and leaving the territory of the country, the massage therapist Dorothy Stain had not registered the fact of crossing the Georgian border.
In order to avoid the disclosure of the information concerning the expenditures of the President in future, in April 2009, Mikheil Saakashvili decided to covertly spend the sums necessary for his personal purposes.  Before that, the expenditures of the President were public and were financed from the resources of the Administration of the President and State Procurement Agency. Therefore, Mikheil Saakashvili would mobilize the necessary sums allocated from the Budget at the Special State Protection Service – an organization directly subordinated to him. This organization would further covertly cover the personal expenses of Mikheil Saakashvili.
Teimuraz Janashia, the former Head of the Special State Protection Service, was commissioned to accomplish the criminal plan.
Through Teimuraz Janashia, in breach of the requirements of the State Secrets Act of Georgia, the expenditure of the budgetary funds by Mikheil Saakashvili for personal purposes was disguised as the covert (secret) expenditures. To this end, the President Mikheil Saakashvili issued “classified” decrees, upon which GEL 5 952 500 in total were allocated from the Presidential Reserve Fund for the Special State Protection Service. In addition, upon the “classified” decrees issued by Mikheil Saakashvili, the Special State Protection Service was assigned to cover various expenses of the President of Georgia and his family as well as their guests within the country and abroad, in particular: travel and living expenses, the expenses related to cosmetic procedures, food, education, gifts and souvenirs, daily and other expenses.
During the period from 2009 to 2013, upon behest of Mikheil Saakashvili, the Special State Protection Service secretly covered the expenses of the President which could not been legally covered by the Administration of the President of Georgia and State Procurement Agency. The sums addressed for covering such expenses were written-off at the Economic Department of the Special State Protection Service based on the “CLASSIFIED” reports. The mentioned reports were “CLASSIFIED” in violation of the requirements of the List of the Data Pertaining to State Secrets. In fact, none of these reports and the attached documents confirming the expenditures contained the information pertaining to the category of state secret.
According to the deal between Mikheil Saakashvili and Teimuraz Janashia and in compliance with the commissions of the President, within the period from September 2009 to February 2013, GEL 8 837 461 of public funds were embezzled by covertly covering the costs of services provided for the President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili and various individuals in Georgia as well as abroad.  Expenditures unrelated to the official business were: GEL 2 074 611 belonging to the State Budget were addressed to cover the hotel expenses, GEL 916 017 – for purchasing travel tickets, GEL 1 403 966 – for the food services provided for Mikheil Saakashvili, his family and other persons in Georgia as well as abroad, GEL 2 280 196 – for transport services in Georgia and abroad, GEL 673 260 – for cosmetic procedures, GEL 273 971 – for renting the residence, GEL 115 171.14 – for purchasing clothes, GEL 237 354 – for purchasing gifts and souvenirs, and GEL 576 508 were addressed to cover various expenses.
Based on the evidences, we would like to present more detailed information on the part of the personal expenditures of state funds by Mikheil Saakashvili and others:
According to the evidences, GEL 191 643 were used to cover the expenses of Sergio Calderon Latasa – a Spanish cook hired by Mikheil Saakashvili; namely, remuneration of the cook, residence rental, the fee for the translator provided for the cook, and the expenses related to traveling to Spain; GEL 75 181 were spent to cover the hotel expenses of Ali Kamal, Mikheil Saakashvili’s personal stylist; GEL 26 388 were paid to the Health Retreat Centre (Innsbruck, Austria) for the services provided for Giorgi Ugulava, then Mayor of Tbilisi; GEL 88 919 were paid for hotel services outside Georgia for these individuals: Koba Nakophia, businessman and former Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM), Goga Khachidze,former Minister of Environment Protection and Natural Resources of Georgia and current Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM), Nugzar Tsiklauri, current Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM), Giorgi Gabashvili, current Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM), Sergo Ratiani, current Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM), Petre Tsiskarishvili, current Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM), Levan Varshalomidze, former Chairman of the Government of the Autonomous Republic of Adjara and Giorgi Arveladze, the former Minister of Economy in Saakashvili’s Government; GEL 6 342 were paid for the hotel services provided for Mariam Sajaia, current Member of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM) in the United Arab Emirates and the city of Batumi; GEL 6 401 were paid for the hotel services enjoyed by Alana Gagloeva, former Head of press-service at the Administration of the President of Georgia, in the United Arab Emirates; GEL 15 873 were spent on the hotel services and travel tickets for fashion models Christina and Natalia Vusovas; GEL 38 247 were paid for the travel tickets for the parents of Vera Kobalia, the former Minister of Economy and her sister Nina Kobalia; GEL 503 383 were paid for renting an airliner for Mikheil Saakashvili; GEL 58 876 were paid for renting Porsche, Mercedes and Audi brand vehicles for Mikheil Saakashvili and Giorgi Ugulava in Austria; GEL 45 214 were paid for renting limousine and minivan during M. Saakashvili’s visit to Verona, Italy; GEL 33 204 were paid for renting a helicopter in Peru; GEL 35 350 were paid for renting bicycles for Mikheil Saakashvili in various foreign states; GEL 25 237 was paid for renting yacht in the City of Pisa, Italy; GEL 49 499 were paid for 7 (seven) jackets and 1 (one) sport cashmere coat purchased for M. Saakashvili in Great Britain; herewith, GEL 7 994,84 were paid for 2 (two) handmade suits; GEL 53 283 were paid for 10 (ten) wristwatches purchased in the USA, England and Georgia; GEL 15 989 were paid for the painting of Meredith Ostrom, the breast painter, in London; the hotel, vehicle, food expenses and the air tickets costs for Mikheil Saakashvili, Davit Bakradze, former Chairman of the Parliament of Georgia (UNM)  and Levan Varshalomidze in Phuket Thailand, for two days amounted to GEL 127 858, etc.
We would like to underline that in parallel with covertly spending the funds referred to above, the following sums were addressed by the Administration of the President and the Special State Protection Service to cover representation expenses: GEL 6 213 015 – in 2009, GEL 3 340 728 – in 2010, GEL 4 654 100 – in 2011, and GEL 5 809 808 – in 2012. In total, GEL 20 007 651 were used to cover representation expenses, the reasonable expenditure of which is to be additionally examined by the investigation.
Thus, based on the evidences, with the use of official authority, Mikheil Saakashvili embezzled GEL 8 837 461 of State funds.
The investigation against Mikheil Saakashvili and Teimuraz Janashia continues under Article 182 §3 of the Criminal Code of Georgia, which, in case of guilt, prescribes a prison term ranging from 7 (seven) to 11 (eleven) years.