Will the President Pardon Prisoners with Life Sentences for Humanitarian Reasons?
16 October, 2014
Will the President Pardon Prisoners with Life Sentences for Humanitarian Reasons?
Editors note: In early 2013 before Margvelashvili was even elected president, the new Georgian government at the initiative of former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili released 56 percent of Georgia’s prison population. In a matter of months, more than 13,000 prisoners were released from Georgia’s brutally over-crowded prisons in a mass amnesty act - and in move that removed Georgia from the list of countries with the highest incarceration rates per capita in the world. But since then crime has increased in Georgia, and violent crime along with it, as this newspaper has reported. Yet the increase in crime began long before Margvelashvili was elected president.

According to information attained by Kviris Palitra, the President’s Administration began working on the issue of amnesty for those sentenced to life in prison. Zviad Koridze, Chairman of the Pardon Commission, confirms that the subject will be discussed with the president very soon. He explains that the matter is the initiative of Giorgi Margvelashvili.

ZVIAD KORIDZE, Chairman of the Pardon Commission:

– There are several issues that require our collective attention, and the topic of prisoners with life sentences is one of them. We have many of those, including three women, and we want to extend a hand to them for humanitarian reasons.
By sentencing these people for life, the government basically tells them that they are doomed to eternal hopelessness. We should approach this not from the rigid point of view that such actions endanger public peace, but from an inquisitive point of how this kind of pardon can make our society more humane.
Inmates have partially served their sentences already, and the president decided to give them a chance to start living normal lives. If we look at the issue from this standpoint, there is no connection between the president’s pardon and a rise in crime rate.

– A large part of society thinks that frequent pardoning of inmates poses a significant risk…

– The president has an exclusive right to pardon any convict, and naturally, this is his risk and his responsibility. Out of all the people pardoned by Margvelashvili (a total of 660 inmates, 460 of whom were released while the rest had their sentences reduced), only eight ended up back in prison again.

– Are cases of inmates eligible for pardoning researched well enough?

– The president studies the list presented to him by the commission in detail, reviews every single case and only then makes his decision.

– How much time do you have to discuss and review the list that you give to the President?

– The commission worked on the last list from the 26th to the 29th of September. On the 29th, we presented the list to President Margvelashvili and nine days later he stated his decision. We met four times over the course of those days and discussed every single case in detail.

– Are convicted murderers are also eligible for Presidential pardon?

– Yes, but so far it has been applied only to two such people and they had their sentences halved.

Former official in the Ministry of Internal Affairs and head of “Law Enforcers’ Defense League,” ZAZA CHAIA thinks that the mass pardoning of criminals endangers public peace and creates difficulties for the police:

“Those who get pardoned and released usually end up in prison again on various charges. One simply cannot study cases of hundreds of criminals in a few days and then release them in such a nonchalant fashion. Georgia will never run out of national and religious holidays, and Margvelashvili simply cannot go about releasing prisoners whenever there is a celebration,. Let me remind you that the President has pardoned two convicted murderers last week. As for pardoning of life-term prisoners, I think that this is absolutely unacceptable and will cause a massive scandal in society.”

Author: Vakho Beridze
Other Stories
Georgian businesswomen sisters sentenced to 4 years in prison
Legal proceedings on the so-called Center Point case have ended.
 Georgian priest charged with conspiracy to murder senior cleric
Prosecutors in Georgia have charged a high-ranking priest with conspiracy to murder after he was found to have attempted to fly out to visit the country’s religious leader
Patriarch’s deacon detained on charges of preparing assassination
Georgian Prosecutor’s Office detained deacon Giorgi Mamaladze on charges of preparing an assassination.
 Brother of famous Georgian actor found dead
A young man’s body was found in the village of Tsavkisi, 10 kilometers from the capital, yesterday.
Georgian man killed in Las Vegas was Ex-President Shevardnadze’s security team member
The man killed in a weekend shooting at a Starbucks coffee shop in Las Vegas was a naturalized U.S. citizen from the country of Georgia
Georgian woman accused of murdering her husband and child sentenced to life imprisonment
Magda Papidze, accused of murdering her husband and child, was sentenced to life imprisonment.
Seeking Closure?
Seeking Closure?
The Prosecutor’s Office stopped the investigation of the Erosi Kitsmarishvili case.
Law enforcers detain activists supporting LGBT society
May 17 marks International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.
Five people detained over illegal possession of secret video footage reflecting private life
The Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia has arrested five former officials over the fact of obtaining and keeping secret video footage
Another video showing private life released on the internet
Another video depicting private life of an individual was spread via Internet.
Noise to become punishable in Georgia
The Parliament's human rights committee approved the bill, according to which, noise becomes punishable in Georgia.
“Aleksi Petriashvili was threatened recently” - Georgia’s Free Democrats party leader wounded
One of the leaders of Free Democrats party, Aleksi Petriashvili was attacked and shot in the legs today.
Is Limited Liability Always “Limited”?
BY TAMARA TKESHELASHVILI AND MARIAM ANTIA, lawyers at Mgaloblishvili Kipiani Dzidziguri (MKD) law firm
National Probation Agency introduces house arrest
House arrest, a punitive measure representing an alternative to common imprisonment, has been implemented in Georgia in accordance with the new Justice Code.
Davit Dvali and Revaz Sakevarishvili appointed as temporary managers of Rustavi 2
Davit Dvali and Revaz Sakevarishvili were appointed as temporary managers of broadcasting company Rustavi
Tbilisi City Court satisfies Kibar Khalvashi’s request on handing over Rustavi 2 shares back
Tbilisi City Court has announced a verdict on the Rustavi 2 case. Under the decision of Judge Tamaz Urtmelidze, one
Justice Ministry launches procedures in order to deprive Mikheil Saakashvili of Georgian citizenship
As Georgia’s Justice Minister Tea Tsulukiani has declared
Will the Hague Revisit the Russian-Georgian War?
According to The International Criminal Court, The Hague’s renewed interest in the 2008 war between Georgia and Russia
Constitutional Court partly considers Gigi Ugulava’s complaint
The Constitutional Court has partly considered former Tbilisi Mayor Gigi Ugulava’s complaint.
Levan Gvazava's case – armed attack or attempted suicide?
Last week, a tragedy occurred at the territory of Okrokana, not far from Tbilisi – former Deputy Interior Minister Levan Gvazava
A Verdict in the Zurab Zhvania CaseA Verdict in the Zurab Zhvania Case
Was Georgia’s former prime minister killed by a carbon monoxide leak caused by an improperly installed gas heater
One of Zurab Zhvania’s bodyguards released from the courtroom and another stays in prison till December 24
The jury has issued a recommendation of softening the punishment for Zurab Zhvania’s security service employees
Greece's VIP inmate - What profit does the Georgian mafia try to make from the Greek crisis?
Georgian organized crime is once again a topic of foreign media attention. Before the referendum in Greece took place, the Italian media
New Beginnings
New Beginnings
Nepotism and unskillfulness – in order to tackle these two major problems, the government has recently announced a public service
The “Unsolved” Case - The Fate of Antonio Russo
If published in the West, Russo’s footage would have been disastrous for Russia. The journalist wanted
Other Stories
The touching social ad released by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia received huge feedback not only in Georgia but also abroad.
After the verdict was announced, the ex-mayor of Tbilisi Gigi Ugulava entered the city court.
Former Tbilisi mayor Gigi Ugulava was sentenced to 9 years of imprisonment for embezzlement in the Tbilservice
Former Mayor of Tbilisi Gigi Ugulava has been released from prison.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs has posted a video depicting the incident involving MP Giorgi Karbelashvili.
MP Giorgi Karbelashvili has spent a few hours at a police station. According to Rustavi 2 TV, an incident took place in the village
Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia have held a presentation of a new ad showcasing the work of the agency
On the 8th of May, a man armed with an automatic weapon, tried to break into a currency exchange booth located near Didube subway station in Tbilisi
The Ministry of Internal Affairs has officially confirmed the detention of Shalva Abuladze, the prime suspect in two police officers’ murder.
Zurab Japaridze, a National Movement leader, presented video footage at today’s press conference that depicts a conversation between a citizen and police officers.
GEL Exchange
October 2017
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31