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Detained archpriest still in custody

By Tea Mariamidze
Thursday, March 30
Tbilisi City Court judge Arsen Kalatozishvili fully accepted the prosecution's motion and left Archpriest Giorgi Mamaladze, who remains charged with the alleged planning of poisoning the Patriarch's secretary, in custody.

The defense demanded the detainee be released on 20,000 GEL bail, but the judge did not satisfy the motion, as he claimed that the detainee may hinder the process of finding the evidence.

The lawyers of Archpriest Giorgi Mamaladze are going to appeal the decision of the City Court.

“We will appeal this decision in Georgia…and if necessary in the Strasburg Court as well,” Giorgi Pantsulaia, the lawyer of the archpriest, said.

Another lawyer of the detainee, Mikheil Ramishvili, believes the court's verdict was an example of selective justice.

“I can say with responsibility that there is no justice in Georgia,” he added.

Prosecutor Zviad Gubeladze believes that if the detained was released he would be able to hide from justice.

“Mamaladze has some powerful contacts abroad and enough finances to hide from justice,” he stressed.

Giorgi Mamaladze, the deputy head of the Patriarchate’s Property Management Service and director general of the Patriarchate’s medical center, was detained at Tbilisi International Airport, from where he intended to depart for Germany on February 10.

Chief Prosecutor Irakli Shotadze said that Mamaladze was attempting to acquire cyanide, and the man from whom he tried to receive the substance informed the police that the archpriest intended to kill a 'high-ranking religious figure'.

Later, it was revealed the alleged target of the attempted murder was the Patriarch's secretary, Shorena Tetruashvili, and not a senior religious figure, as was initially claimed by the Prosecutor's Office. Mamaladze is now accused of attempting to murder Tetruashvili.