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Rustavi 2 airs video footage of Robakidze’s murder

By Messenger staff
Wednesday, February 20
TV channel Rustavi 2 aired the video footage concerning the murder of Buta Robakidze on February 19. According to the TV channel, the video was obtained by that time chief of the Didube-Chughureti police department Irakli Pirtskhalava. Spreading the video materials was condemned by civil society representatives. Family members of Robakidze called the materials faked.

Pirtskhalava went to the prosecutor’s office accompanied by his lawyer at law, but he said he did not trust the investigation and therefore, he decided to hand over the tape to journalists before giving it to law enforcers. The video shows that the young men, who were dragged out of the BMW car, had one pistol and one machine gun with them. Pirtskhalava told journalists that Robakidze was not a friend of the other guys in the BMW, which was pursued by the police all day long due to suspicion in another accident. Pirtskhalava hoped the investigation will change direction and the truth will be found.

Chief prosecutor Archil Kbilashvili stated that the video is one of the pieces of evidence inserted in the investigation of the case.

“First of all its authenticity should be confirmed that it is not edited and only afterwards will we probe into the material scrupulously and naturally, the investigation’s position will be determined. If it causes a change of this position, it will be accepted because our goal is to find the truth and there is no other task for us. If there is a difference between the materials of the investigation and the developments shown in the video, of course we’ll make corrections,” Kbilahsvili said

Soso Robakidze, father of Amiran (Buta) Robakidze, killed by a patrol policeman, believes that the video footage released by the former head of the Didube-Chughureti police division, Irakli Pirtskhalava, is fake.

Robakidze stated that “those who are connected with the crime are creating nonsense, fake footage. The footage will be examined and we’ll see the answer. Whatever happens there, my son didn’t have a weapon, where did they keep the video cassette for 10 years?” Soso Robakidze said.

Ia Metreveli, the mother of Robakidze, stated that when police killed her son and declared him a criminal, it was Rustavi 2, and today Rustavi 2 also released the footage.

She says the statement from the policemen that the detainees have nothing, is cut from the footage. Metreveli explains that investigator Shalva Mikabadze said about the gun which is seen in the footages, that they made him put it in the car, then take out, which was then recorded.

Ia Metreveli says that one of the main witnesses, the former journalist of Video Patrol, Gocha Mukbaniani confirms the same. Metreveli says that the video material shot by Gocha Mukbaniani was taken by Donadze and after he “locked himself in the video editing room”.

“How many times can the bandits destroy me? They buried me alive many times. How can Donadze dare to have influence over the television,” Metreveli said.

Buta Robakidze’s friend Irakli Mikaberidze was at the press conference along with Ia Metrveli. Mikaberidze commented about Irakli Pirtskhalava’s statement that Buta Robakidze was there accidentally.

“How could he accidentally be there, he would not sit in a stranger’s car. If we were strangers, we would not be together the whole evening. They falsified the facts. They brought journalists and made them shoot what they wanted. Investigator Shalva Mikabadze says himself that they put the weapon [in the car] and took it out in front of the cameras. Mukbaniani confirms this. It was the reality,” Mikaberidze said.

After releasing of the materials Donadze states that the materials proved his innocence and no links with the murder.

Civil society representatives condemned the broadcasting of the materials reflecting brutality on TV, especially when the faces were not accordingly covered.