The messenger logo

Family: Khardziani’s killer is identified

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, December 18
The family of the murdered businessman, Besik Khardziani, says that they identified the killer, caught on film by a street surveillance camera.

According to the businessman’s wife, Eka Nonikashvili, Khardziani’s daughter was able to identify the murderer after the investigation revealed the materials to them. As Nonikashvili says, her daughter remembered seeing the killer several times near their house, who was probably watching his victim.

“My daughter remembers that she saw the killer one day before the murder. She saw him standing at the entrance of the house without a mask. This murder was ordered by Giorgi Udesiani because of the Turtle Lake shares,” Nonikashvili told Maestro TV over a phone conversation.

She also confirmed that the killer is the same person whose photos were spread by the head of the Moscow bureau of Iberian-Caucasian Movement, Zaza Gabedava, in May 2015. Gabedava then claimed that a photo of a man with a Caucasian appearance was sent to him from Tbilisi, which was taken by the street surveillance camera soon after the murder, when the killer was trying to escape.

According to the family's lawyer, Malkhaz Salakaia, the killer was watching his victim for some time, and he was moving through Tbilisi with his accomplices.

“I cannot say exactly who will be summoned to the Prosecutor’s Office, but the investigation has established many links to the crime,” stated Salakaia.

Businessman Besik Khardziani, who was actively campaigning against the United National Movement party (then in power) and several members of the party, was shot dead at his flat on March 29, 2015.

He had spent nearly two years in prison and stated he had experienced inhumane treatment there. The businessman was released through the large-scale amnesty carried out by the Georgian Dream government.

When released, Khardziani sued the former authorities and was struggling to regain control of his property.

His family claim it was an ordered hit and is pointing the finger at UNM member Giorgi Udesiani, who wanted to claim shares of Khardziani’s Turtle Lake asset.

The new Chief Prosecutor of Georgia, Irakli Shotadze, has stated that he is actively involved in the investigation of the Khardziani case. According his recent statements, the case is solved, however certain details have not been revealed yet.