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Head of Tskaltubo City Assembly Detained for Taking Bribe ‘in Especially large Quantities’

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, January 29
Head of the Tskaltubo City Assembly in western Georgia Grigol Ivaneishvili was detained last week for bribe-taking in especially large quantities.

The crime is punishable by 11-15 years in prison, the Anti-Corruption Department of the Georgian State Security Service said, which detained the official.

The State Security Service says that the detainee took a bribe worth 250,000 GEL from a foreign businessman who wanted to buy a former building of the Tskaltubo City Assembly and its land plot.

“Ivaneishvili promised a foreign citizen to put a former building of the City Assembly up to auction for the previously negotiated price and to help him in purchasing the property, while on exchange for it, Ivaneishvili asked [the foreign citizen] to pay a GEL 250,000 bribe.

“Furthermore, upon the initiative of Ivaneishvili, the foreign businessman registered a 16 percent share of his company on the name of Ivaneishvili’s trusted person as a guarantee for paying the amount of bribe,” the agency says.

SSS stated that on December 26, 2018, Tskaltubo municipality announced an online tender on the purchase of a building and a land plot located in Tskaltubo.

“The foreign businessman participated in the tender and with the assistance of Ivaneishvili he was able to purchase the building and the land plot at the preliminary negotiated price,” SSS said.

In order to cover-up the crime, Ivanieshvili signed a fictitious loan agreement with a foreign businessman and made the latter transfer of GEL 250, 000 to the account of his son, SSS said.

Ivaneishvili was detained on January 25, 2019, as soon as the transfer was completed.