Tbilisi City Court turned down on July 2 prosecution’s motion, which was seeking seizure of passport from ex-mayor of Tbilisi and one of the UNM party leaders Gigi Ugulava.
Prosecutors were also requesting the court to order Ugulava to post GEL 50,000 bail as a preventive measure in connection to new criminal charges filed against him without being arrested on June 30; charges are related to alleged misspending public funds while serving as Tbilisi mayor in connection to a contract with car parking management firm in the capital city. The court has turned down this motion too.
The motion requesting seizure of Ugulava’s passport aimed at preventing him from traveling abroad.
Ugulava, who is already standing trial into several other separate cases, has traveled abroad and returned back to Georgia for number of times since first criminal charges were filed against him in February, 2013. Prosecutors, however, claimed that this time the Ugulava “was not intending to return back to Georgia.”
Ugulava said last week that he was planning a “working visits” to London, then to Kiev to meet mayor of the Ukrainian capital city Vitali Klitschko and then to Chisinau to participate in a meeting of monitoring committee of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities scheduled for July 3.
“I will not make [PM Irakli] Garibashvili or [ex-PM Bidzina] Ivanishvili happy by fleeing [the country],” Ugulava said the court hearing on July 2. “I’d rather die than flee the country.”
Before the court hearing on July 2, Ugulava said that the latest criminal charges against him, which he denies as politically-motivated, are part of the authorities’ attempts “to revive politically dying” Davit Narmania, Georgian Dream’s Tbilisi mayoral candidate, who will face UNM’s Nika Melia in the second round runoff.