On August 7, 2015 Levan Kochlashvili, a man accused of brutally murdering a Georgian transgender woman, Sabi Beriani, was acquitted. The court did establish that the accused had inflicted a fatal abdominal injury to the victim, started a fire in the apartment and finally fled the crime scene. Despite this fact, Levan Kochlashvili was only sentenced to 4 years in prison for two other charges brought against him: battery (the accused physically assaulted another transgender woman the same evening) and arson. The brutal murder of Sabi Beriani was considered as an act of self-defense. To put it simply: Levan Kochlashvili will be punished for physically assaulting another person, and for damaging someone’s property but not for taking Sabi Beriani’s life.
Transgender persons are the most marginalized group even within the LGBT community. They constantly face persecution, oppression and violence. The number of transgender persons murdered around the world every year is devastatingly high.
We, individuals and organizations signing this petition, call on the Prosecutor’s Office to appeal the above-mentioned acquittal and to consider the transphobic motive of the crime, outlined in this case.