Press on High-Profile Murder Trial
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 7 Jul.'06 / 13:37

The Georgian press extensively covers in its July 7 editions a trail of Girgvliani murder, mainly criticizing the court for its failure to go to the root of the crime.

The Tbilisi City Court sentenced four former police officers to eight and seven years of imprisonment for inflicting bodily harm that led to death of Sandro Girgvliani. But the court and the prosecution is under public pressure to punish not just immediate culprits, but those high-level Interior Ministry officials who were allegedly behind the crime.
The daily 24 Saati (24 Hours) writes that the judiciary “has failed to pass the public test.”

“As anticipated, during announcement of the verdict the presiding judge Giorgi Chemia has not named a motive behind Sandro Girgvliani’s murder, as well as said nothing about those who have ordered the murder. The judge has ended hastily-conducted trial yesterday - it took just ten days - and ignored the position and evidence put forth by the victim’s attorney,” the 24 Saati daily writes.The paper also said that the court failed to answer the questions left without response by the prosecution when investigating the case.

The daily Rezonansi wrote in its article "Society Against Authorities", that while President Saakashvili is in the United States and the Parliamentary Chairperson Nino Burjanadze in Brussels for the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly session, Georgia is on the verge of political crisis.

The newspaper quotes State Minister for Conflict Resolution Issues Giorgi Khaindrava who said on July 7 that certain changes are needed in the government.

“The court failed to pass the test. The verdict should have affected all those who were involved in this [murder] case… It is time for changes and we [the members of the cabinet] should give possibility to the President to carry out these changes,” Goga Khaindrava was quoted by the Rezonansi.

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