Former Georgian prison chiefs detained in inmate torture case
TBILISI, April 16 – RAPSI. The former heads of three prisons in Georgia have been arrested over accusations of torturing prisoners, the News Georgia news agency reported on Tuesday, citing Georgian Prosecutor General Archil Kbilashvili.
Speaking with journalists, Kbilashvili said the arrested people include the former director and two top officials of Ksani Penal Colony No. 15, the former director of Rustavi Penal Colony No. 6 and his deputy, and the former director of Prison No. 2 in Kutaisi.
The detained individuals have been charged with inhumane treatment, torturing and beating inmates.
This is not the first time that officials have been fired over charges of torturing inmates in Georgian prisons.
In October 2012, the Interior Ministry said it had uncovered incidents of prisoners being treated poorly in Gldani Prison No. 8 in Tbilisi. Investigators said a group of prison employees were treating prisoners cruelly, and recorded video materials of their actions. The Prosecutor General's Office said ten Corrections Department employees have been arrested, including the deputy department head and the prison director.
Later, similar acts by administration officials were reported by prison inmates in Kutaisi and Rustavi. Former Corrections and Legal Assistance Minister Khatuna Kalmakhelidze and Interior Minister Bacho Akhalaya resigned due to the incident. Nearly 20 staff members in the colonies were detained or fired. Mass protests spread throughout the country, with people demanding punishment for those accused of torture.