Witness failed to identify the accused, murder trail told

Witness failed to identify the accused, murder trail told

A witness at the trial of a Georgian man accused of murder failed to identify the accused when presented with his photograph, the Central Criminal Court heard Friday.

Badri Khvedelidze (aged 33), a Georgian national, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of his compatriot George Tkeshelashvili at a direct provision hostel for asylum seekers in Tralee, Co Kerry in October 2005.

Adeyenka Sow Unmi (aged 45), from Nigeria, was also living under direct provision in Tralee when the alleged incident occurred. He called to Westward Court, where Mr Khvedelidze lived, on October 20 for a haircut.

When he was leaving, he told the court he heard loud voices and saw a fight taking place at the end of a corridor in the hostel.

In a statement to gardaí taken later that day, he said he saw one man walk towards him, away from the scene of the fight, and that he had a knife in his hand.

Mr Unmi told gardaí that he would be able to identify the man with the knife, because he had walked directly towards him.

When gardaí gave him eight photographs of people thought to be involved in the incident, he identified three of the men but did not identify the accused, Badri Khvedelidze, as having been at the scene.

Defence counsel Kerida Naidoo SC put it to Detective Garda Brian Mackey of Tralee Garda Station that it was a mistake for the gardaí not to have pointed this failure to identify the accused in the book of evidence.

Det Gda Mackey responded that it was not a mistake and that there were four other people whose photographs he had not identified and he did not feel the need to mention those either.

The trial continues in front of a jury and Judge Isobel Kennedy on Tuesday October 27.


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