Ex-president Saakashvili found guilty of abuse of power

  • Mikheil Saakashvili, former president of Georgia and former governor of Odessa in Ukraine. Photo: Mikheil Saakashvili/Facebook
Agenda.ge, 5 Jan 2018 - 11:31, Tbilisi,Georgia

Tbilisi City Court has delivered a guilty verdict against former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili this morning.

The court found Saakashvili guilty of abuse of power when pardoning people arrested for the 2006 case of the murder of Sandro Girgvliani.

Saakashvili, who is currently in Ukraine, was sentenced in absentia to three years in prison.

The judge said that the ex-president abused his official powers when he pardoned former law enforcers arrested for the Girgvliani case without the participation of the Pardon Commission.

In Georgia, the president is the only authorised person to pardon inmates but he must do so only with the consultation of the Pardon Commission.

Today’s decision was the first court verdict delivered in cases filed against Saakashvili in Georgia.

Four separate criminal cases are filed in Georgia with Saakashvili as a defendant:

  • Abuse of power when pardoning people arrested for the case of the murder of Sandro Girgvliani – the verdict was announced today.
  • Violent dispersal of anti-government mass protests on November 7, 2007; unlawful raiding of Imedi television company by riot police; and the illegal take-over of property owned by late media tycoon Badri (Arkadi) Patarkatsishvili – all filed as one criminal case. The verdict has not been announced yet.
  • Exceeding official powers using violence or a weapon and organizing intentional infliction of grave injury by more than one person in the case of the attack on Valeri Gelashvili. The verdict has not been announced yet.
  • Appropriation or embezzlement of budget money in large quantities (more than 8.8 million GEL) with a prior agreement by a group in the case of Special State Protection Service expenses. The verdict has not been announced yet.

Saakashvili served as Georgia’s third president from 2004-2007 and again from 2008-2013. He was officially charged in Georgia in 2014, however, by the time his case went through court he was already in Ukraine.