Man who filmed torture in a Georgian prison arrested
TBILISI, January 18 - RAPSI. Vladimir Bedukadze, a former warden who filmed incidents of torture in the Gldani Prison in Georgia, was arrested in Tbilisi International Airport, according to his lawyer Lali Aptsiauri.
She added that the first interrogation is scheduled for Friday afternoon. Until then, Bedukadze will remain in the Gldani Prison, Novosti Georgia reports. Vladimir Bedukadze was placed on the Interpol wanted list at the end of September 2012.
On January 16, 2013, the manhunt was halted at Georgias request. The Georgian Interior Ministry called on Bedukadze to return and cooperate with investigators.
Previously, the Interior Ministry said it had uncovered proof that prisoners were treated poorly in Gldani Prison No. 8 in Tbilisi. Investigators said a group of prison employees were carrying out acts of cruelty on the prisoners and were filming their practices. The Prosecutor General's Office said 10 employees of the Department of Corrections had been arrested, including the prison director.
The Interior Ministry posted some of the videos on its website, noting that only a small portion had been made available to the public. The remaining footage will not be shown due to its explicit content, it said.
However, the Maestro and Ninth TV channels showed shocking videos of beatings and rapes in the prison, and claim they have possession of all the recordings.
The channels said they received the videos from former prison employee Vladimir Bedukadze.
By that time, Bedukadze had left Georgia and was reportedly in Belgium.
Mass rallies demanding that the guilty be punished have taken place in Tbilisi and other Georgian cities.
The Prosecutor General's Office reported that an investigation into the torturing of prisoners is underway. Some 12 department employees have been detained.
The Tbilisi City Court has placed them into custody.
On September 18, Bedukadze was charged in absentia under the article on torture. On September 20, the Tbilisi City Court heard the case in absentia and ruled to detain Bedukadze.
Another former prison employee has been placed on the wanted list. Corrections and Legal Assistance Minister Khatuna Kalmakhelidze and Interior Minister Bacho Akhalaya have resigned following the incident.
Public defender Georgy Tugushi has become the new corrections minister and former Deputy Interior Minister Eka Zguladze has been appointed Acting Interior Minister.
Prime Minister Vano Merabishvili has been made responsible for the penitentiary system.
In Late December 2012, the Prosecutor General's Office announced that the torture videos posted by the Interior Ministry on its website were filmed at the request of former Justice Minister Zurab Adeishvili.