State Budget Raised GEL 140 Million through Plea Bargaining
11 April, 2013
State Budget Raised GEL 140 Million through Plea Bargaining
Georgian state enjoyed more than 140 million budgetary incomes in four years through the much trumpeted use of the plea bargaining, largely practiced by ex-power through the Prosecutors’ Office.
Despite high public interest, the amounts transferred each year to the state budget through the use of plea bargaining agreements, were unknown until now. Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) published the information on the questioned transfers in the state budget within 2009-2012 on March 18, 2013 for the
first time. IDFI became interested how much was transferred to the state budget through the use of plea bargaining agreements that were largely used as a tool of political pressure by the Prosecutors’ Office on proprietors and businesses as well as personalities disagreeing with the political standpoint of the Rose government. IDFI researched information on the money volumes channeling to the state budget through the use of plea bargaining agreements in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012, also to what sums were made the plea bargaining agreements, and information about the individuals, whose property has been expropriated and given to the state in this period as well as the total value of the expropriated property for each year.
Early in this past February IDFI asked the Prosecutor’s Office first of all to provide with the requested information to which the analytical department of the Prosecutor’s Office answered it does not keep record on either the transferred money volumes to the state budget or on expropriated property handed to the state as a result of plea bargaining agreements. With similar requests IDFI addressed the National Bureau Enforcement (NBE) of the Ministry of Justice [on March5, 2013]. The NBE said it does not possess information about the sum to which the plea bargaining agreements were made in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 as well as about the individuals, whose property has been expropriated and given to the state or the total value of the property for each year. Meanwhile the NBE letter clarifies, that the total sum transferred to the budget through the use of plea bargaining agreements amounted to GEL 140 039 162.76 in 2009-2012. The distribution of this sum by years is as follows: GEL 8 040 392.81 in 2009, GEL 42 361 459.28 in 2010, GEL 51 009 723.78 in 2011 and GEL 38 627 586.89 in 2012.
The module of court statistics prepared by IDFI presents the number of the judgments made on the ground of procedural agreement in 2007-2012, according to which it becomes clear that 52 402 persons were judged on the ground of procedural agreement in 2009-2012.
Even though the amounts imposed to be transferred to the state budget as a result of the procedural agreements were more-less known, for example according to the research by Transparency International Georgia this amount equaled to GEL 61 100 000 in 2009, the exact volume of the transfers to the state budget through the plea bargaining remained unclear until the IDFI researched the issues and published the exact statistics exceeding GEL 140 million in cash.
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