Court Fines Father of Lazare Grigoriadis GEL 2,000

The Tbilisi City Court found Beka Grigoriadis, the father of Lazare Grigoriadis, who was arrested in connection with the March 7-9 protests against the “foreign agents” law, an offender and fined him GEL 2,000.

“Pure Putinism has been introduced in Georgia […] I was fined for nothing, so what will they do to Lazare? […] A representative of the patrol police was brought out, who does such dirty things in order to be promoted to a higher position,” Beka Grigoriadis told reporters after the trial.

His defense lawyer, Nestan Londaridze said that the defense would appeal the court’s decision to a higher court.

On June 1, police detained Beka Grigoriadis on administrative charges after he attempted to set up a tent near the Parliament building to protest the detention of his son, Lazare Grigoriadis. Beka Grigoriadis was arrested on charges of disobeying the police (Article 173 of the Criminal Code of Georgia).

Chronology of the story

Beka Grigoriadis had been trying to set up a tent in front of the Parliament for the past few days, but police prevented him from doing so. Local human rights watchdogs believe that by depriving Grigoriadis of this right, the Interior Ministry is grossly violating  his right to freedom of expression and assembly.  

The public defender also responded to the interference in setting up a tent for Grigoriadis and emphasized that “placing a tent is an integral part of realizing the freedom of assembly.” The Ombudsman stressed that this restriction is particularly problematic and disproportionate when the tent does not block the entrance to the building or disrupt traffic. The Ombudsman further added that “even when only one person expresses protest using a tent… he still enjoys the freedom of expression, and any interference without relevant and proper justification is disproportionate.” The public defender called on the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia to refrain from unjustifiably limiting the freedom of assembly and expression.

On June 3, at last, Grigoriadis finally pitched his tent behind the parliament.

Note: The material was updated on June 5, 2023, with the Ombudsman’s statement and the information about Grigoriadis’ pitching of the tent.

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


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