Former top officials of the Georgian Interior Ministry Gia Dgebuadze, David Kokahsvili, Ilia Gamgebeli and Levan Kargadava have been charged with abuse of authority and illegal detention in the high-profile case of businessman Badri Patarkatsishvili, who died in his UK home in strange circumstances in 2008.
Controversy between former President Mikheil Saakashvili and Patarkatsishvili emerged after the controversial death of former PM Zurab Zhvania in 2005. They also could not agree on business-related issues.
Patarkatsishvili, who was one of the key opponents of Saakashvili and his government, was found dead in February 2008 in England when he was 52 years old.
The Prosecutor’s Office says that in June-July 2006 the Constitutional Security Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia [which was run by the four charged] was instructed to carry out surveillance on Patarkatsishvili as “the man was taken as a threat by the United National Movement (UNM) government.”
The former officials planned an armed attack on Patarkatsishvili’s house in Ureki in the summer of 2006. The plan included shooting at Patarkatsishvili’s house to make him afraid and force him [Patarkatsishvili] to give up politics, “the Prosecutor’s Office says.
The Prosecutor’s Office reports that former head of Ureki police Jemal Shamatava warned Patarkatsishvili regarding the upcoming attack.
The former officials learnt about it and decided to punish Shamatava. They [the former police officials] staged a robbery and instructed a man who was detained for robbery to accuse Shamatava of torture and sexual abuse,” the Prosecutor’s Office says.
The Prosecutor’s Office reports that the man [hired against Shamatava] inflicted injuries on his body at Ureki police station and accused Shamatava of torture and abuse which led to Shamatava’s detention and sentencing him to nine years in prison.
The charged individuals face nine to 11 years in prison.