Web Portal on Human Rights in Georgia

Disabled Convicted Blames Influential Prisoners and Prison Administration Members in His Attempted Murder

03.08.2017
 
Natia Gogolashvili

“On July 24, 2017 I was sent from prison # 18 to prison # 17 by force. On July 26, inmates of the prison # 17 tried to kill me. They planned to kill me ruthlessly. From about 5-6 pm to 11-12 pm I was under psychological oppression,” prisoner Solomon Sekhniashvili wrote in his letter, which his lawyer Eka Kobesashvili from Human Rights Center presented to journalists. 

Lawyer Eka Kobesashvili said she met the convicted on August 1 and heard about the incident in details from him. As the convicted said, the video-cameras in the facility saved his life. The incident was happening in front of the cameras and the prisoners could not forcibly take him into the cell, where they planned to kill him. 

“When all prisoners had to be in their cells, inmates of the neighboring facilities came to the medical unit and demanded him to go to his cell, where they planned to kill him. Although Solomon Sekhniashvili had already warned the prison deputy director to ensure his safety, neither security officers nor medical unit staff members appeared in the medical unit during one hour. Consequently, the prisoner was left alone with harassers,” Eka Kobesashvili said. 

Convicted Solomon Sekhniashvili states that certain group of prisoners decided to kill him after the TV-Company Rustavi 2 prepared reportage about his problems as a disabled person in its weekly program P.S Kurieri.
Sekhniashvili noted that the harassers told him that informing the society about the problems in the penitentiary establishment contradicts the informal order agreed between the influential prisoners and the prison administration. Sekhniashvili added that his liquidation was planned and he was taken to the prison # 17 for that purpose, where the prisoners assaulted him but the prison administration did not prevent the incident. 
Solomon Sekhniashvili has been in prison #18 since 2014. He is sentenced to 7 years of prison term. 

Sekhniashvili is convicted for the crime punishable under the Article 143 (3) Part 3 and Article 120 of the Criminal Code of Georgia. The Article punishes human trafficking, use of the victim’s service. 

Human Rights Center’s lawyer said after the incident, Solomon Sekhniashvili was sent back to the prison # 18, where he complained about the living conditions. His return to the initial facility coincided with the dismissal of responsible officers from prison # 18 and the inmate connects this fact with his incident. 

Human Rights Center calls on the Ministry of Corrections to take preventive measures to ensure safety of the convicted Solomon Sekhniashvili; to carry out timely and effective investigation into the incident; and the Chief Prosecutor’s Office to immediately open investigation into the fact of violence against Solomon Sekhniashvil and threat to his life. 

Humanrights.ge wrote about the problems of this particular prisoner several times. Convicted Solomon Sekhniashvili has several grave diseases, he uses wheelchair and has his backbone damaged, he cannot move alone. He needs rehabilitation and palliative care. HRC lawyer Eka Kobesashvili said the prisoner’s life is in serious danger that contradicts the rights guaranteed under the Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Article 15 of the Constitution of Georgia, which oblige the State to take timely and effective measures to protect the life and health of the prisoner. 

It is noteworthy that on October 8, 2016 the joint commission of the Ministry of Corrections and Ministry of Labor, Healthcare and Social Welfare reused Solomon Sekhniashvili to be early released. HRC lawyer petitioned the standing commission with the request of early release of the convicted person based on the revised documentation but the commission has not reacted so far. 

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