Special Report on Examination of Citizens' Complaints against Law Enforcement Agencies

On November 22, 2017, Public Defender Ucha Nanuashvili presented the Special Report on the Examinationof Citizens' Complaints against Law Enforcement Officers. The document reviews the process of disciplinary inspections launched on the basis of the citizens’ complaints against the employees of the Prosecutor's Office, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Corrections and the State Security Service of Georgia.

At the presentation of the report, First Deputy Public Defender Natia Katsitadze spoke about the shortcomings detected as a result of examination of disciplinary inspections, including:

  • The number of disciplinary liabilities imposed on the basis of applications/complaints is extremely low in all agencies;
  • No footage of body cameras are obtained as neutral evidence, even when they are available.
  • The provisions of general inspection do not provide for the obligation to initiate inspections as soon as applications/complaints are received;
  • Citizens, as a rule, are not provided with summarizing information about the results of official inspections;
  • The legislation does not envisage the right to appeal against the final document in case official misconduct is not found;
  • No statistical data are proactively processed or published; no information is provided to public on particularly important cases;
  • The public awareness of the power and competence of general inspections is very low.

Together with the uniform practice, different tendencies were also observed in the abovementioned agencies during the survey:

The General Inspection of the Prosecutor's Office of Georgia launches inspections only in response to insignificant number of applications. In addition, no inspection criteria are defined. Regardless of the violation detected by the inspection, disciplinary liability may not be imposed on the employee of the Prosecutor’s Office.

The number of applications/complaints filed with the General Inspection of the Georgian State Security Service is extremely low; majority of citizens are notified of the summarizing responses. The agency also studies the applications that do not fall under its competence.

As a rule, the General Inspection of the Ministry of Internal Affairs does not examine the footage of body or other cameras as neutral evidence. On the other hand, as a rule, it timely questions all relevant persons. It should also be noted that the complaints concerning alleged ill-treatment are sent to the Prosecutor's Office.

The General Inspection of the Ministry of Corrections lacks human resources, due to which, it fails to timely respond to complaints, especially filed by the population of western Georgia; identical texts can be found in the explanations of the employees of the penitentiary establishments; almost no footage of the video cameras of penitentiary establishments are archived as neutral evidence in the process of inspection; additional evidence is only seldom obtained.

The Public Defender, on the basis of the examination results, addresses various agencies with only several primary recommendations, while carrying out systemic changes requires additional working meetings and discussions.

See the electronic version of the report


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