( RT ) - A court of appeal in Tbilisi has turned down an appeal from Irakly Okruashvili's lawyer for his release from custody.
The appeal against the two-month remand period handed down to Georgia's ex-defence minister, Irakli Okruashvili, has been dismissed by the country's court of appeal. Okruashvili's lawyer, who is also an activist for his political party, says the decision was expected, but has vowed to continue fighting it.
"We now have the chance to appeal against this political decision in the European Court. From tomorrow we will start preparing a case which details how the decision of the Georgian court violates the European convention on human rights and the presumption of innocence" says Eka Beselia, Okruashvili's lawyer.
Prosecutors say that the court's decision is perfectly lawful, and argue that Okruashvili would pose a security risk if released on bail.
"We required that Irakli Okruashvili be remanded in custody because there was a real threat of him either escaping or pressuring witnesses" maintained Georgian State Prosecutor, Ketevan Chomakhashvili.
Okruashvili was arrested on charges of extortion, money laundering and criminal negligence on Thursday, two days after appearing live on TV to accuse his former ally President Saakashvili of plotting political killings and of corruption.
The Georgian opposition condemned Okruashvili's detention as politically motivated, and Friday saw massive protests on the streets of Tbilisi demanding his release and the resignation of the government.
Today's ruling by the court of appeals comes as no surprise, but although Okruashvili is behind bars, with the opposition planning more protests, his case remains in the public eye.
Meanwhile Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili has denied allegations of corruption made by former Defence Minister Irakli Okruashvili. The statement follows several days of silence from the President and comes as the opposition parties convened on Saturday for closed-door talks in Tbilisi.
Police detained Irakli Okruashvili shortly after he accused the President and his inner circle of serious crimes, including plotting to assassinate public figures in Georgia.