Shevardnadze’s Relative Released after Paying $15,5 Million
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 26 Apr.'04 / 15:20

Prosecutor General Irakli Okruashvili said at a news briefing on April 26 that Gia Jokhtaberidze, co-founder of Georgia’s biggest mobile phone company MagtiCom and ex-President Shevardnadze’s son-in-law, will be released after he agreed to pay USD 15,5 million.

Irakli Okruashvili also said that charges had been dropped against Jokhtaberidze, who was accused of tax evasion.
 
“Gia Jokhtaberidze’s release has become possible after his wife Manana Shevardnadze [daughter of ex-President] paid USD 15,5 million from her personal account. Although Jokhtaberidze was accused of misappropriation of GEL 700 thousand, his family has voluntarily paid this sum to the state budget,” the Prosecutor General said.

Jokhtaberidze was arrested on February 20 aboard of a scheduled Tbilisi-Paris flight in the Tbilisi airport. He is accused of tax evasion.

This is the first case in Georgia when a suspect agrees to pay money in exchange of dropping charges. Several former officials from Shevardnadze’s government arrested for corruption charges were released from custody, after reimbursing the sum allegedly misappropriated by them; however criminal charges were not dropped against them.

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