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Wanted policeman surrenders

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, September 15
A policeman accused of exceeding his official powers and inciting a person to commit suicide surrendered to police late on September 13, claiming he is innocent and will go on a hunger strike.

The incident took place in western Georgia’s Samtredia district on August 7, when local Demur Sturia committed suicide and left a letter wherein he wrote that policeman Goderdzi Tevzadze was exercising pressure on him in order to receive from him the names of local drug users and dealers.

The western Kutaisi City Court imposed pre-trial detention on the alleged offender in absentia on August 30, as at that time Tevzadze was evading arrest.

While appearing at western Georgia’s Prosecutor’s Office yesterday, Tevzadze said he was innocent and hoped for a fair verdict.

He also announced he was starting a hunger strike in protest of the accusations.

“I came here to protect the policeman’s uniform and prove my innocence,” Tevzadze said.

Tevzadze also stated he had not been on the run.

Georgia’s Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili refrained from making a long comment, but said he was waiting for the outcome of the investigation.

He stressed that everyone would answer if they committed crimes.

Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office wrote on August 29 District Inspector Investigator Goderdzi Tevzadze summoned a 22-year-old Demur Sturua to the police station without any legal grounds to do so.

The Office said for the purpose of intimidating and influencing Sturua, Tevzadze unlawfully made him sit in his police car before taking him to a deserted area and threatened him that he would impute a crime to him if Sturua did not cooperate with the police.

Tevzadze allegedly then physically assaulted Sturua and forced him to provide the police with information about which people in the village grew marijuana in the local area.