Ex-official, now opposition leader Okruashvili, sent to pretrial detention in a high-profile murder case

Irakli Okruashvili does not admit to the charge. Photo: allmedia.ge.

Agenda.ge, 22 Nov 2019 - 18:04, Tbilisi,Georgia

Former Interior Minister and current opposition leader Irakli Okruashvili has been sent to pretrial detention in the high profile murder case of Buta Robakidze back in 2004, under the United National Movement leadership.

He was charged in the case, alongside with currently wanted former Chief Prosecutor Zurab Adeishviili, on November 19.

Okruashvili is already in pretrial detention for “incitement to violence” during the June protests in Tbilisi earlier this year.

Okruashvili’s teammate Guram Chalagashvili says that former head of the press service of the Georgian Interior Ministry Guram Donadze and former head of patrol police Zurab Mikadze gave testimonies against Okruashvili in the Robakidze case.

The Georgian Chief Prosecutor’s Office says that Robakidze and five others were stopped by a patrol police crew late on November 24, 2004. During a check a patrol officer’s accidentally went off, resulting in the death of Robakidze at the scene.

The Prosecutor’s Office reports that “to save the image of the patrol police [which was newly introduced in the country at that time] Okruashvili instructed his employees to say that Robakidze and five others in the car were armed and they attacked police.

To achieve the goal arms were planted in the car and Robakhidze and five others were declared as members of an armed, criminal group,” the Prosecutor’s Office says.

The Prosecutor’s Office stated that, through the instruction of former Chief Prosecutor Adeishvili, the five individuals in the car were charged with membership in a criminal group.

Okruashvili and Adeishvili [who is now wanted] face three to eight years in prison if the charge is confirmed.