09 May 2009, 02:00

In Georgia, political scientist accused of espionage arrested

The City Court of Tbilisi has sentenced political scientist Vakhtang Maisaya, who was accused of espionage and arrested on May 5 by counter-intelligence agents, to two months of pre-trial detention.

Mr Maisaya, who, according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA), had an access to state secrets, was charged with espionage, and is under a threat of up to 12 years of imprisonment, as the "Gazeta.Ru" writes.

As noted by the "News-Georgia", Onise Meboniya, Maisaya's advocate, has refused to defend his interests, according to his version, because of pressure from the authorities.

According to the investigation, Maisaya prepared information, part of which contained state secrets, and sent it in coded form by e-mail. The messages that he sent touched on the political, military and economic situation in the country, governmental changes, and purchase by Georgia of arms and military equipment.

Vakhtang Maisaya for four years worked as an employee of Georgia's diplomatic mission at NATO in Brussels.

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