Results of Examination of July 5 Case
The Public Defender considers the investigation of the July 5 case ineffective. The Prosecutor's Office did not charge anyone with the organization or leadership of a criminal group, while the decisions taken by the court were inconsistent and, in specific cases, unsubstantiated.
The Public Defender’s Office studied the progress of the investigation and hearings of the cases of violence committed by persons opposing Tbilisi Pride on July 5, 2021, a total of three criminal cases, in which Tbilisi City Court convicted 20 persons on the basis of various articles of the Civil Code.
Out of the 20 persons, only 6 persons were found guilty of participating in group violence, while the remaining 14 persons were acquitted by the court in the episode of participation in group violence (they were found guilty on the basis of other articles).
The study of the case materials made it clear that the investigation into the July 5case does not meet the standards of effective investigation in terms of thoroughness or timeliness. Examination was conducted late, physical evidence was also obtained late.
The Prosecutor's Office did not consider the proposal of the Public Defender and did not charge a specific person with organizing or directing group violence, which became the main reason why the court acquitted 14 people of all charges of group violence.
The Prosecutor's Office also ignored the cases of violation of the right to property and did not file appropriate charges.
Inconsistent practices were also revealed. In particular, in one of the cases, the court, when convicting 6 people of participating in group violence, considered the evidence presented by the Prosecutor's Office sufficient to establish the group violence, while in other cases, it did not apply the mentioned approach and acquitted 14 people, despite the fact that the Prosecutor's Office had presented similar evidence relating to all persons.
One of the main shortcomings of the prosecution should be considered the fact that the organizer or leader of the group violence was not charged.
The court also violated the principle of individualization of punishment, it did not take into account the crimes committed by specific persons in the past or their personality when determining the punishment.