Saakashvili sentenced in Georgia to 3 years in absentia

Former Georgian president sentenced to 3 years in jail

The Tbilisi City Court found on January 5 ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili guilty of abusing power in pardoning the former Interior Ministry officials, who were convicted in the high-profile murder case of Sandro Girgvliani, and sentenced him to three years in prison in absentia.

Saakashvili had issued pardons for four people, who were convicted of the murder and they were released in 2009 after three years of imprisonment.

Commenting on the court's decision, Mikheil Saakashvili said that the decision of the court was "illegal" and violated the worldwide law.

"The "verdict" of the Georgian completely illegal and contradicts all global and national norms", Saakashvili wrote on Facebook.

But this "verdict", as well as the trial in Kiev, demonstrates that oligarchs who came to power in Georgia and Ukraine are acting synchronously and coordinate against me as a leader of the fight against corruption, oligarchy and people's robbery.

After serving as president of Georgia for 10 years, Saakashvili was appointed as the governor of Ukraine's southern Odessa region by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in 2015 but he resigned the following year. Currently, Saakashvili is involved in organizing anti-government protests in Ukraine.

Saakashvili said the world knew that Russian President Vladimir Putin "has been demanding both Georgian and Ukrainian authorities to implement repressive measures" against him.

The Ukrainian leader a year ago stripped Saakashvili of his citizenship while he was overseas.

In November 2014, when Saakashvili was no longer the Georgian president, prosecutors charged him and other former Georgian officials of being accomplices in the falsification of evidence presented in the murder trial. Georgia has requested Saakashvili's extradition but Ukraine has not complied.

"According to Ukrainian laws, a person who was a Ukrainian citizen and for the last several years resided in Ukraine can not be extradited", Chornolutskiy told RFE/RL.

Saakashvili opposed the court ruling, saying it was "unlawful".



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