Court Orders TV Pirveli to Repudiate ‘False Report’, Compensate Policeman for Moral Damages

The Interior Ministry announced on February 7 that the Supreme Court had upheld the decision of lower courts and ordered TV Pirveli, which is critical of the government, to repudiate ‘false information’ about Gela Kvashilava, a patrol inspector, and to compensate him for moral damages.

The Interior Ministry noted that on January 30, 2021, the TV channel aired a story accusing Kvashilava of illegally transporting narcotics. “The TV channel published his photo, although the Department of Strategic Communications of the Interior Ministry told the author of the story that he had wrong information,” the Ministry said.

All three instances confirmed that Gela Kvashilava had nothing to do with transporting drugs and that the story broadcast by TV Pirveli was “humiliating and slanderous.”

“TV Pirveli knew that this information was false and deliberately misled the public,” the Ministry added.

TV Pirveli responds

Nodar Meladze, head of TV Pirveli newsroom, told that the decision was expected, since “we have no court” in the country. He said the judges fulfilled the political order.

Meladze argued that the court did not question the respondents to the aired story and said the testimonies of Kvashilava and his mother were contradictory. Meladze also said that the TV station has not yet received the Supreme Court’s reasoning, but the Court of Appeals ordered TV Pirveli to pay GEL 2,000 (approximately USD 750) in damages.   

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