Smith Murderer Found Guilty

Malkhaz Kobauri, a 19-year-old Shepherd who stands accused of murdering Ryan Smith, his 4-year-old son Caleb and the rape and murder of Lora Smith, was found guilty by the jury.

The Smiths were an American family living in Georgia who were on a camping trip in the Khada Gorge at the time they were killed.

The guilty verdict was delivered by the jury on March 26, after a 4-hour discussion. Kobauri was found guilty on all charges raised against him by the Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia (POG): the brutal killing of three people, premeditated murder of a minor and the rape of Lora Smith.

Kobauri’s lawyer, Aleksandre Kobaidze, says he will appeal the verdict, and said the decision came as a surprise.

“We will appeal the verdict. I think there is a chance that our case will be revised,” he said, adding that Georgia is not ready for the institute of the jury courts.

Mariam Matikashvili, the shepherd’s mother, says that her son is innocent and “he was used by the POG to please the US.”

“I will not be able to find justice here. God knows my son is not guilty and only God knows what happened there,” she said after the trial.

The length of the sentence will be decided by the Gori Regional Court on March 27.

The case prosecutor, Zaza Datukishvili, believes the judge should give Kobauri the maximum sentence – life imprisonment.

“We are dealing with an extremely grave crime and we have all the evidence to prove Kobauri did this. I would like to thank every member of the jury for delivering such a unanimous decision,” he said.

The final trial will take place on March 27, 12:00 at Gori Regional Court.

The Smith family lived in the town of Marneuli, south of Tbilisi, for seven years and were well-respected members of the local and expat community.

By Thea Morrison

Related stories:

"Aggravating Circumstances" Charges Made against Shepherd Accused of Killing American Family

Smiths’ Family Murder Case Goes to Jury Trial

Kobauri's Lawyer Quits Amid Rape Rumors

Media: Autopsy Report Allegedly Says Lora Smith Was Raped

Detained Shepherd Says Smiths Were Killed by Two Men

Aftermath: Tbilisi & Marneuli

Smith Family Memorial

Parents of Arrested Shepherd Deny He Killed US Family

Acting US Ambassador on Murder of American Family: We Are Shocked

MIA Confirms American Family Were Murdered in Dusheti

ReWoven & Beyond, Republished in Memory of the Smith Family

Murder in the Mountains: Investigation Ongoing

Geo Media: Deceased US Couple May Have Been Murdered




26 March 2019 10:01