zurab adeishvili

Ex Justice Minister Zurab Adeishvili is believed to be in hiding in Belgium. All his four passports have been revoked. (Interpressnews.)

TBILISI, DFWatch — Former Justice Minister Zurab Adeishvili has been detained in absentia for things he did to Cartu Bank, which has links to current Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili.

Five other persons who are also implicated in the case were released on bail.

Adeishvili’s whereabouts remain unknown. He left Georgia in secrecy the day after Saakashvili’s National Movement party lost the October 1, 2012 parliamentary election.

In December, he was charged with abuse of powers. According to the Prosecutor’s Office, Adeishvili organized mistreatment of prisoners.

He was sentenced to detention in the beginning of January, and the court revoked his four passports.

The last ruling concerns actions committed against Cartu Bank, which belonged to Bidzina Ivanishvili. The bank ran into many difficulties after he declared that he would go into politics in late 2011, and these problems, it is argued, were an effort by the then government to bankrupt the bank.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs published information about this illegal scheme, which involved former government officials and businessmen close to them.

The scheme consisted of several stages. The Prosecutor’s Office accuses Zurab Adeishvili of being the brain behind this scheme. According to the Office, he instructed Jaba Ebanoidze, former chairman of the Revenue Service, to carry it out.

Afterwards, Ebanoidze instructed his subordinates Mamuka Lashkhia and Otar Agladze to find a few companies close to the then government and get them to participate.

Both employees cooperated with investigators and gave details about the scheme.

Nikoloz Melia, governor of a Tbilisi district, is also accused in the case. He was appointed last week by the mayor. Melia denies being involved, even though the he is implicated by evidence produced in the course of the investigation.

Sunday, Tbilisi City Court sentenced the former Justice Minister to detention.

The others were released on bail: Jaba Ebanoidze USD 18 000, Nikoloz Melia USD 15 000, Roman Chkhenkeli USD 9 000, and Otar Agladze and Mamuka Lashkhia USD 5 000.

Lawyers working for Adeishvili and Melia plan to appeal the decision.