Ex-Georgian official, victim of UNM Gov’t Sulkhan Molashvili dies in Paris

Sulkhan Molashvili was arrested in 2004 and was acquitted by ECtHR in 2014. Photo by PIA.ge.
Agenda.ge, 29 Jun 2016 - 16:50, Tbilisi,Georgia

Former head of Georgia’s State Audit Office, Sulkhan Molashvili, has died of liver failure.

Molashvili passed away earlier today in Paris, the capital of France. 

Molashvili travelled to France from Georgia several days ago to receive treatment for his ailing liver. 

Georgia's President offered his condolences after learning of the former official's death.

I’m very saddened by the death of Mr. Molashvili. I share this big loss with his loved ones and stand by his family,” said President Giorgi Margvelashvili. 

Molashvili was recognised as a victim of Georgia’s previous United National Movement (UNM) government when the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) acquitted  him in 2014 after it was found the former government abused his human rights.

Molashvili was found guilty of abuse of power, concealing a crime and misappropriation of public funds on April 23, 2004, shortly after the Rose Revolution through which UNM took office. He was sentenced to nine years in prison. 

He spent four years behind bars and was released in 2008 under a motion of Patriarch Ilia II. 

Molashvili stated his human rights were permanently violated in prison. 

When coming to office in late 2012 after the Parliamentary Elections, the current Government of Georgia addressed ECtHR authorities, who admitted the former government’s violations in Molashvili’s case and requested permission to re-investigate the incident.

The Strasbourg-based Court ordered the state to pay Molashvili €20,000 compensation and to complete a new investigation within one year.

The current Government paid the compensation in January 2015, while the investigation in Molashvili’s case is still in progress.

Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office said dozens of witnesses have been questioned and volumes of documents have been studied during the course of the investigation.