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Police Officer Involved in Dispersal of June 20 Protests Released on Bail

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The Tbilisi City Court ruled on September 27 to release Levan Imerlishvili, police officer who was arrested on charges of exceeding official powers during dispersal of the June 20 protests, on bail.

His defense lawyer cited Imerlishvili’s health problems as the reason behind filing a motion for his release.

The police officer’s release triggered strong criticism from the opposition politicians. Levan Bezhashvili of the United National Movement pointed at selective justice in the country, noting that instead of holding the perpetrators accountable, offenders have been released from jails.

MP Lela Keburia of the European Georgia party said that it is yet another message from the government that it will not assume either political or legal responsibility for the June 20 developments.

The police officer’s release also triggered public protest. The organizers of the movement “It’s a Shame” held a protest rally outside the Tbilisi City Court dubbed “Selective Justice is a Shame.”

Investigation into the fact of exceeding official powers by law enforcement officers was launched on June 24.

The Prosecutor’s Office arrested one police officer on July 15 and the other – on July 16. On August 28, the Prosecutor’s Office brought charges against the third police officer.

A total of three law enforcement officers have been charged with exceeding official power in connection with the June 20-21 developments. Former Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia was also interrogated as part of the investigation.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)

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