In Abkhazia, law enforcers would not let advocates to see their clients, refuse to acquaint them with case materials, and also put pressure on them, the local bar association has stated. After the case with detention of Zhanna Shenkao, the bar has demanded from the authorities to introduce criminal liability for interfering with their activities.
The “Caucasian Knot” has reported that the Bar Association of Abkhazia appealed to President Aslan Bzhaniya in connection with law enforcers’ interference with the advocacy. The reason was also the incident with the lawyer, Zhanna Shenkao, who was accused of disseminating on the Facebook some provocative materiaks, including on political topics.
Ms Shenkao herself has linked her prosecution with the fact that she had attitude to the suspects in the murder case of a crime boss in Sukhumi in November 2019; she has a child from one of the suspects and is a defence witness in this case, therefore, they are trying to intimidate her.
Konstantin Chagava, the Chairman of the Bar Association of Abkhazia intends to achieve a meeting with the republic’s leader, Aslan Bzhaniya, in order to convey to him the legal professionals’ problems in Abkhazia
As an example, he cited the non-admission of an advocate to Akhra Avidzba. His advocate, Inga Gabilaya, has complained that she was unable to visit her client. Also, in April 2018, Valery Tsushba, an advocate, was detained. For several hours, advocates were not allowed to see him, and then he was set free without explanations; while his colleagues linked Tsushba’s detention with his professional activities.