High-profile murder case of Zurab Vazagashvili solved [VIDEO]

Eleven former police officials were arrested for allegedly conducting premeditated murder of two Georgian men.
Agenda.ge, 02 Feb 2015 - 18:38, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Prosecutor’s office has solved a high-profile murder case, which resulted in the arrest of 11 former police officers.

The ex-officials allegedly conducted premeditated murder motivated by revenge of Zurab Vazagashvili and Aleksandre Khubulow, who were killed by the police special forces unit during the so-called ‘tennis court special operation’ in 2006.

The Prosecution released a special statement with the details of the criminal case and noted that the murder was planned by the former head of the Criminal Police Department Irakli Pirtskhalava.

The statement also read that murdered Alexandre Khubulov exposed Pirtskhalava’s brother in drug-related crimes, after which the head of criminal police planned a revenge on him, which resulted in the death of Vazagashvili and Khubulov.

Prosecutor’s Office also released a special video, which restored the graphic image of the special operation. Watch it below:

According to the Prosecution’s version, the members of special forces unit opened fire to the car of Vazagashvili and Khabulov without any warning, despite the fact that no threat was coming from them.

After the intensive shooting had stopped, an employee of the Criminal Police Department Giorgi Tsaadze carried out control shots. Vazagashvili’s car had 97 bullet holes.

The official motive of the special operation was a robbery that the victims were allegedly planning to conduct, however, the investigation revealed that no actual robbery was planned and the scenario was created by Irakli Pirtskhalava to fabricate the evidences.

Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili today responded to the completion of the investigation and noted that Government investigated many high-profile cases, but a few, including the operation of the courts, remained unsolved until now.

"I can tell you that since our Government has come to power, actually all of the high-profile cases were investigated and only one or two remained unsolved. Unfortunately, we inherited a very difficult legacy and deep examination was necessary,” Garibashvili said.

Zurab Vazagashvili and Aleksandre Khubulov were shot by the police special forces unit while the pair was driving in a car near the tennis courts in central Tbilisi on May 2, 2006.

Police claimed they responded with fire only after shots were fired from the men's vehicle. But families of the two killed young men and their lawyers challenged the official version.

Authorities closed the investigation into allegations that police used excessive force for lack of evidence in April, 2007.

After the change of government in 2012, Georgian Dream Coalition lawmakers said new evidence had emerged after the family of Vazagashvili and its lawyers obtained alternative ballistic examination results, reportedly showing that no shots were fired from inside the car.

The subject gained even higher importance after Zurab Vazagashvili’s father Iuri Vazagashvili was killed by an alleged bomb detonation while visiting his son’s grave in their native village two weeks ago.