Former official of the Constitutional Security Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs under the United National Movement government G.M. has been detained, while two other former top figures of the same agency L.K. and R.Sh have been charged for plotting murder and abuse of authority.
The Prosecutor’s Office said that they seized two recordings in 2016 which included conversations regarding the plotting of the murder of Patarkatsishvili, who had to flee Georgia in 2007 as he was accused of plotting a coup.
"The recordings were made on 4 and 5 February of 2007 and the three individuals who have been charged speak about scenarios of how to kill Patarkatsishvili. They say that they are collecting information about Patarkatsishvili’s bodyguards and the personnel and are also discussing poisoning the man with a substance which gives the impression of natural death," Agenda.ge cited the office as saying.
The Prosecutor’s Office stated that Patarkatsishvili’s murder "was sanctioned" by former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili and all the details of plotting of murder were agreed upon with the former head of the Constitutional Security Department Data Akhalaia, who is wanted by Georgian law enforcers.
The Prosecutor’s Office explained that they have been studying the materials and questioning related figures over the course of two years.
Patarkatsishvili was found dead on 12 February, 2008 at his Surrey mansion in England.
Political scientist Gela Vasadze, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that the general prosecutor's office reported not on disclosing Patarkatsishvili’s murder, but on opening a criminal case regarding the plotting of the murder. "The prosecutor answered negatively to the question whether the plotting of the murder led to the murder. The case was open based on the audio files with conversations saying that it would be good to eliminate Badri Patarkatsishvili, because he is an enemy of the state. Three participants of the conversation are already in jail, the issue with the last one is being resolved,” he explained.
According to the political scientist, Georgian society wonders why the case was opened now, if the files were made public in 2016? "It is clear that this is an attempt to steal the spotlight from the audio files and recordings of conversations being held about the actions of the current authorities," the expert said.
The issue of Mikhail Saakashvili's return to Georgia is not relevant now, he specified. "Everything depends on the outcome of the presidential election. If suddenly the current or next president signs a pardon decree, then he returns. Therefore, I think that no one, even Mikhail Saakashvili himself, does not discuss this issue now," Gela Vasadze concluded.