International legal experts offer advice to Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office

  • The meeting with the international legal experts at the Chief Prosecutor’s Office in Tbilisi. Photo by, 22 Jul 2014 - 14:16, Tbilisi,Georgia

A team of world-renowned legal experts are in Tbilisi to give practical advice to Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office to help develop the country’s legal representation and raise the standards of impartiality, fairness, consistency and transparency in sensitive cases involving high-ranking public officials.

The three international legal experts, invited to Georgia by the Chief Prosecutor’s Office, are internationally recognised former prosecutors who each have a high degree of international credibility and extensive experience in investigating and prosecuting cases of former Government officials in numerous domestic and international tribunal settings.

The Deputy Prosecutor of Georgia Giorgi Gogadze believed the recommendations offered by the legal experts - Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, Moshe Lador and Paul Coffey - would help the Chief Prosecutor’s Office achieve higher levels of professionalism across the judicial structure.

Gogadze said the Chief Prosecutor’s Office had high expectations that the legal experts’ recommendations would help local prosecutors engage in more thorough inspections of ongoing cases as well as cases already being discussed in court.

"The prosecutors are eager to consider the [advice] of our invited legal experts in the investigation, trial preparation and trial procedure planning of cases,” Gogadze said.

He believed cooperation between the legal experts and the Office would last until both sides were satisfied with the achieved results. "The collaboration will not last for one or two years; it will last for many years [and will be] very intensive and effective until tangible results are reached,” Gogadze said.

Gogadze highlighted the high level of experience of the legal experts and said their work in Georgia would be a positive development for both enhancing law enforcement efforts and increasing domestic and international confidence in the Government’s efforts to restore justice in Georgia.

"The invited legal experts have outstanding expertise and qualifications and have earned exceptional reputation for their professional integrity, impartiality and independence among professional peers,” Gogadze said.

The three experts are Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, a former Deputy Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court for former Yugoslavia, former State Prosecutor of Israel Moshe Lador and a former Chief of the US Department of Justice's Organized Crime and Racketeering Section Paul Coffey.

The international experts:

  • Sir Geoffrey Nice QC is a former Deputy Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court for former Yugoslavia (1998-2006) and in that time he led the prosecution of former Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic. He co-authored a report on the investigation into the torture and executions of detainees in Syria with Sir Desmond de Silva QC and David Crane. Sir Geoffrey is currently a part-time Judge and serves as a Professor of Law at Gresham College in London.
  • Moshe Lador served as the State Prosecutor of Israel until the end of 2013, where he oversaw the indictment of former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and several other senior government officials. Mr Lador previously served as the District Attorney of Jerusalem.
  • Paul Coffey is a former Chief of the US Department of Justice's Organized Crime and Racketeering Section. After leaving public office, he was appointed a top justice official in the United Nations mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). He was actively engaged in Kosovo’s justice system reform and was responsible for the oversight and prosecution of all criminal cases handled by the United Nation in Kosovo, including war crime prosecutions.