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Prosecutorís Office Says Release of Judoist Zviadauri on Bail Is Unjustified

By Natalia Kochiashvili
Wednesday, December 1
Georgian Olympic champion and former MP Zurab Zviadauri, charged with premeditated murder in Tsinandali forest in August, has been released on GEL 50,000 bails by a Telavi district court in the eastern Georgian region of Kakheti on November 29.

The General Prosecutor's Office has released a statement, saying that during a pre-trial hearing in the criminal case against Zviadauri and Jangirashvili, Judge Mamuka Tsiklauri considered the imprisonment as a measure of restraint and all of a sudden, changed the detention measure applied to them to bail.

It is unclear for the Prosecutor's Office of Georgia what was founded and under what circumstances, Judge Tsiklauri of the Telavi District Court was guided.

The prosecution, at the trial, fully sought to uphold detention as a measure of restraint and appealed to the real dangers posed by the defendants' possible new offenses and influence on witnesses while at large.

However, the above circumstances were not taken into account by the judge, which is why the defendant in the case of premeditated murder was sentenced to imprisonment with a bail of GEL50,000, and the second defendant was replaced with a GEL 5,000 bail.

ďIt should be noted that the decision made at the pre-trial hearing cannot be appealed and therefore we are deprived of the opportunity to appeal the decision to a higher court.Ē

The prosecution considers that the decision of the judge is unreasonable and the measure of restraint applied by him does not serve the purposes of the measure of restraint.

One of the accused has been charged under Article 108 of the Criminal Code of Georgia (premeditated murder), which envisages imprisonment from 8 to 15 years, and the other under Article 238 (negligent possession of a firearm, thus Conditions have been created for its use by another person, which has had serious consequences), which envisages imprisonment for up to 3 years.

The murder took place on August 16 in Tsinandali forest. 5 people were injured during the two-way shootout. 3 of them died. One of the dead was Zurab Zviadauri's brother - Zviad Zviadauri. The prosecution says Zurab Zviadauri shot and killed 27-year-old Nika Kenchoshvili after the latter killed Zviadauriís brother.

Zviadauri's lawyers do not agree with the accusation and say that the former MP acted within the necessary repulsion. Zviadauri himself is in the same position and he does not plead guilty.

The trial will be resumed with a substantive hearing of the case.