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GYLA wins Another Landmark ECtHR case on Planting Drugs and Firearms

26 March 2021 GYLA wins Another Landmark ECtHR case on Planting Drugs and Firearms

On March 25, 2021, European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) published its decision and found a violation on the right to fair trial (Art.6. paragraph 1 of the ECHR) in the case of Tlashadze and Kakashvili v. Georgia. GYLA litigated this case with USAID/PROLoG support.

GYLA argued that drugs and fire-arms were planted on the two applicants in 2009-2010, both supporters of opposition parties and participants of anti-government demonstrations. In both cases the convictions for illegal possession by Georgian courts were based solely on search and seizure protocols, statements of the police officers involved and the evidence obtained through the searches.

The Court cited its prior decisions with similar circumstances in the cases of Kobiashvili v. Georgia, and Megrelishvili v. Georgia and found that the manner in which the key evidence against the applicant had been obtained, cast doubt on its reliability and accuracy. Furthermore, in addition to inadequately addressing the nature, source and veracity of the operational information, the domestic courts failed to provide a response to the applicants’ allegations that the evidence had been planted on them.

This judgement once again highlighted the long-standing problems of post-factum granting of urgent search and seizure, use of operative information and statements of police officers as the only pieces of evidence in arrest cases. This judgement should act as an impetus for changing the practices of the police, prosecution and the judges, to better ensure protection of human rights in Georgia.

USAID
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