TBILISI, DFWatch–Prison Minister Sozar Subari Monday arrived in Senaki, in western Georgia, to visit a family whose son is said to have committed suicide in prison.
It was the demand of the father of Goga Dzvelaia that he wouldn’t bury his son until Subari personally visited his family. Now the family demands to show footage was been taken in the cell of their son after he allegedly hanged himself.
Davit Dzvelaia says that the minister promised them to show the footage when he visited their house.
“When Goga was moved to Kutaisi Prison, he told me he didn’t want to be moved there because if moved to Kutaisi prison something would happen,” news agency Pirveli quotes him saying. He added that either the court or the prosecutor knew about his son’s views but still placed him in Kutaisi prison.
The family does not trust the official version that it was a suicide and claim that Dzvelaia was killed by other prisoners, with whom he had problems.
The prison minister, the father of Goga, lawyer Ledi Dukvadze and independent expert Maya Nikolaishvili yesterday visited the cell where he died and spent three hours there.
Nikolaishvili told journalists that she received answers to many questions from the minister, but one question remains, and that more time is needed to receive an answer.
The father still believes his son was killed and says he has plans to provide proof for this.
“I think my son was killed and then was hanged,” he said.
Subari promised the family that they will have the opportunity to watch the footage from the cell in a few days. He told Rustavi 2 that investigators have the footage right now. It is a video about 24 hours long and will require a whole day to watch through.
“Everyone must see everything within the frames of the law in order to clear away all suspicions. When I say this, I don’t mean that the crime didn’t happen. If there was a crime, it must be investigated and the guilty must be punished, but if there are no signs of a crime, people must be as assured as possible about this,” Subari said.
The family says it will not bury 16-year-old Goga Dzvelaia until the investigation is finished.
Dzvelaia died October 7 in Prison No 7 in Kutaisi, about 24 hours after he was brought there. He had been convicted before. On August 28, he was pardoned by the president. He told law enforcers and his family that he didn’t want to be placed in Kutaisi prison because he had problems with the other prisoners there, but the prison administration and the ministry claim that he didn’t have contact with the other prisoners because he was in a solitary cell.