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Fight against hate crimes

By Tea Mariamidze
Tuesday, November 29
“Our fight against hate crimes is far more effective compared to previous years,” Georgia’s first elected Chief Prosecutor, Irakli Shotadze, told reporters before delivering his annual report to the Prosecutorial Council on Monday.

He also added that fighting against hate crimes was one of the top priorities of Georgia’s Prosecutor’s Office.

"Prosecutors were re-trained in this direction in order to make criminal prosecution in this field effective. We issued relevant recommendations as well. The report provides statistics, which show that compared to previous years, our struggle against this type of crime was much more effective," he stated.

Shotadze’s presentation was attended by Prosecutorial Council members, the body set up last year to ensure the transparency of the judiciary.

The agency, composed of 14 members and chaired by Justice Minister, was also tasked to name the final nominee for the Chief Prosecutor’s post before Parliament after the Justice Minister selected three candidates.

The report was also attended by legislative, executive, judicial government representatives and NGOs.

The one-year report of Shotadze mainly focused on implemented and current reforms in the Prosecutor’s Office. He spoke about the development strategy, fight against domestic violence and crimes against women and under-aged, fight against trafficking and terrorism and religiously motivated crimes.

Moreover, Shotadze spoke about the investigation of several high-profile cases and underlined that the Prosecutor’s Office did its best to timely and effectively investigate them.

He highlighted that the persons involved in the illegal distribution and release of videos depicting the private lives of citizens have been detained and that Georgia’s Prosecutor’s Office is actively working on the case.

“Former public officials, involved in the creation and accumulation of such videos have already been detained and the trials of these cases were ongoing. As for the release of private videos in internet, the investigation is still in progress,” Shotadze stated.

The Chief Prosecutor also responded to the claims of the opposition, which said the system is not transparent and impartial and added that the fact he delivers his detailed report to the Prosecutorial Council and the NGOs proved the opposite.

“Talking about the fact that we are not working in a transparent manner is wrong. There are no questions left which the Prosecutor’s Office cannot answer,” he added.

Georgia’s Justice Minister, Tea Tstulukiani, said that at the presentation Chief Prosecutor revealed statistics of the last 6 month. The data showed that the most widespread crime in Georgia is theft, followed by drugs, assault and domestic violence.

“I want to call on every victim of domestic violence to apply to law enforcement agencies if your rights are being violated. It is not normal that the family has become a place where people abuse each other,” the Minister said.