Saakashvili calls Georgian court verdict illegal and contrary to international, national norms
The former Georgian president and the leader of the Movement of New Forces party, Mikheil Saakashvili, has said he considers the Georgian court verdict against him in the case on "malicious abuse of power" in the form of three years in prison to be illegal and contrary to international and national norms.
"The 'verdict' of the Georgian court, which is under the full control of Gazprom's largest private shareholder, Ivanishvili, against me is completely illegal and contradicts all international, national norms and common sense," Saakashvili wrote on his Facebook page on Friday.
Saakashvili also expressed confidence that this sentence, as well as parallel trial in Kyiv, "shows that the oligarchical authorities in Ukraine and Georgia act synchronously and in full coordination with each other" against him because of his activities in the struggle against corruption and oligarchy.
The politician noted that the trial of the president for using the right to pardon, which is not limited in any way, testifies to the completely political nature of this process.
"This also shows that the Georgian authorities have not found anything significant against me for five years: no facts of corruption, no other violations," he added.
"It is no secret for anyone that [Russian President] Vladimir Putin has demanded all these years to take these repressive measures against me from both the Georgian and Ukrainian authorities. He repeated this again at a recent press conference. No matter what Putin, [Ukrainian President Petro] Poroshenko and Ivanishvili do against me, my struggle will continue until the complete victory of our peoples over oligarchy, corruption and poverty," he added.
As reported, early on January 5, Tbilisi City Court found Saakashvili guilty in the case on "malicious abuse of power" as Georgian president and sentenced him to three years in prison.
The court fully agreed with accusations from the prosecutor's office that Saakashvili pardoned four police officers in 2009 who served a prison term for the murder of bank employee Sandro Girgvliani in 2006. This murder case had caused public outcry in Georgia, because former Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili, Head of the Department for Constitutional Security Data Akhalaia and other high-ranking law enforcement officials were involved in the killing.