Justice Minister: ”We’ve less young convicts this year"

Justice Minister says this year more juveniles were involved in a diversion-mediation program. Photo by Ministry of Corrections press office.
Agenda.ge, 28 Nov 2016 - 14:35, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia’s Minister of Justice Thea Tsulukiani says this year more juveniles were offered preventative sentences rather than prison terms.

This meant less young people were behind bars and offered young offenders more opportunities to lead a successful life among the general public.

This year more juveniles were involved in diversion and mediation program than in previous years," she announced. 
This year the percentage of juveniles with a 'not guilty' verdict was four percent, which was the same as last year, but when compared to previous years this figure was only 0.3 percent," Tsulukiani said today. 
  • In criminal proceedings, diversion means giving a first time offender of a minor crime the chance to perform community service instead of a prison sentence as punishment for their crime. With diversion they can also obtain treatment for alcohol or drug problems and/or counselling for antisocial or mentally unstable conduct. 
  • If the offender cooperates and the diversion results in progress, the charges may be dropped. Diversion may not be granted for a second offense.
  • Mediation is a dynamic, structured, interactive process where a neutral third party assists disputing parties in resolving conflict through the use of specialised communication and negotiation techniques

Before November 2014 only juveniles accused of minor crimes had the opportunity to be offered the diversion-mediation program, but after November 2014  the program expanded and was offered to juveniles who also faced charges for more serious crimes.