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Ex-partner of former Batumi Vice Mayor killed following child custody dispute

18 October 2021
Anastasia Shatalova appeared on ‘Nanuka’s Show’ in 2020 where she accused the former mayor of abusing her and their daughter. Image via Mtavari.

Georgian police are investigating the murder of the ex-girlfriend of the former Mayor of Batumi.

Anastasia Shatalova, a 26-year-old Russian citizen, was reportedly shot dead on Sunday night in the Saburtalo District of Tbilisi. 

While the Interior Ministry have so far remained silent, local media reported that police officers searched and retrieved items from the flat of Zurab Beridze in Batumi. Beridze was the Deputy Mayor of Batumi in 2013–2015. 

News outlet Batumelebi quoted Paata Shavadze, who previously represented the deceased, as saying that Batumi City Court had released Beridze on ₾50,000 ($16,000) bail around three months ago after the former official was implicated in domestic violence against Shatalova and their daughter. 

According to Shavadze, the authorities had also issued a restraining order against Beridze but the term had expired by the time of the killing. 

It has not yet been established if Beridze faces any charges or that he was involved in any way in Shatalova’s death. 

Anastasia Shatalova became known to the public after appearing on the popular Georgian TV programme ‘Nanuka’s Show’ in September 2020. During the interview, she alleged that her husband was violent towards her and their child, including threatening her with his gun. 

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In the same interview, Shatalova claimed that Beridze had a separate family which she discovered only after falling pregnant and moving from Tbilisi to Batumi.

Shatalova also alleged last year that Beridze wiretapped her flat and mobile phone as well as those of a babysitter, and refused to let her see her 10-month-old daughter. 

Shatalova admitted to attempting to blackmail Beridze to get her child back, which she said resulted in a restraining order being issued against her.