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Court Put a Friend of Ivanishvili’s Nephew in Prison for Four Years

09.02.2012

News Agency “Pirveli”

The Tbilisi City Court sentenced Zaza Kobakhidze, childhood friend of Bidzina Ivanishvili’s nephew to four year imprisonment.

Kobakhidze was judged under Article 236 Part I and II of the Criminal Code of Georgia – illegal carriage of gun.

Lawyer Lado Macharashvili said the verdict was unfair and they will appeal it at the Appeal Court.

“Zaza Kobakhidze was arrested through blatant violation of the Criminal Procedural Code. Particularly, the law enforcement officers breached Article 38 of the Code which obliges law enforcement officers to clarify to the detainee what he/she is accused of; the detainee should also be clarified that he/she can request lawyer’s assistance and has right to silence. None of these procedures were carried out during Zaza Kobakhidze’s detention,” Macharashvili told the Pirveli.

The lawyer added that rights of the defense side were restricted during the previous trial because their solicitation about interrogation of their witnesses was not satisfied.

The lawyer alleges that his client was accused of the illegal carriage of guns due to political motives. “Zaza Kobakhidze is a friend of Ivanishvili’s nephew. Besides that, he had worked for the Defense Ministry for many years,” said Macharashvili.

The accused was allowed to make a speech at the trial “When I left home, police officers twisted my hands and pushed me down to the ground. My wife and child saw it happen and rushed towards me. So, the police officers rapidly pushed me into the car. Their allegation as if search lasted 35 minutes is not right. I did not resist police officers. It is too difficult to bear similar situation because I have served Georgia all my life; I fought in the August war too. On the day of my detention I was going to the St. Trinity Cathedral to attend blessing of my family name. A Christian never goes to churches with guns. It insults me. I am true and it is difficult for a true man to serve unfair punishment,” Kobakhidze said.

The second lawyer Vakhtang Kanashvili announced the testimony which was used by the prosecutor as a ground to confirm the accusation.

“Inspector-investigator Giorgi Vashakidze of the first regional division of the Military Police Department was interrogated during the trial. Vashakidze said on November 6, 2011 he was near Zaza Kobakhidze’s house together with chief inspector-investigator Ioseb Kusikashvili and Zurab Metreveli to carry out investigative operations in Ninua Str# 6, Tbilisi. According to operative information, junior sergeant of the artillery brigade “DANI” Zaza Kobakhidze was carrying illegal gun. Vashakidze said they were waiting for Kobakhidze from 9:00 am because they did not know whether he was at home or not. At about 12:30 pm they saw Kobakhidze leaving home and go in their direction. Afterwards, the inspector-investigators showed him IDs of Military Police Officers and clarified to him that they intended to search him, and if he had anything illegal he would rather produce it himself. Kobakhidze said he did not have anything illegal after what he was searched and police officers withdraw a gun “Makarov” from his belt. As a result he was arrested and taken to administrative building of the military police,” Kanashvili said.

Zaza Kobakhidze was placed in Gldani Prison # 8 to serve his prison.

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