International experts recommend Georgia to continue prosecution against Saakashvili

  • "We believe that you should continue your investigation and move towards trial," read the conclusion of international experts. Photo by, 22 Mar 2015 - 14:42, Tbilisi,Georgia

The International Prosecution Advisory Panel is recommending the Chief Prosecutor's Office of Georgia to continue its prosecution against ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili and other former high ranking officials.

The Office said the international experts had spent months reviewing the materials provided by the Georgian side regarding the November 7, 2007 protest crackdown and raid on the Tbilisi-based Imedi TV headquarters.

The Advisory Panel concluded the provided evidence was "sufficient" to support the indictment and justified proceeding with the prosecution of Saakashvili, former Interior Minister Ivane (Vano) Merabishvili, former Defence Minister David Kezerashvili, former Chief Prosecutor Zurab Adeishvili, and former Tbilisi Mayor Giorgi (Gigi) Ugulava for various offences.

The International Panel was created in July 2014 under the initiation of the Chief Prosecutor of Georgia for the purpose of actively reviewing the materials provided by the Office of the Chief Prosecutor, including witness statements, experts’ reports, court records, Georgian legislation and other relevant materials.

The Panel was composed of Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, Moshe Lador – former State Prosecutor of Israel and Paul Coffey - former Chief of the United States Department of Justice’s Organized Crime and Racketeering Section.

This was the second report of the International Prosecution Advisory Panel. In the first report, Georgian prosecutors were recommended to continue criminal prosecution against former president Saakashvili and other former high ranking officials regarding the attack on Member of Parliament Valeri Gelashvili in 2005.