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Tbilisi massage parlour killer ‘wanted to kill transgender people’

4 November 2021
Thai Massage Najma. Photo via Facebook.

According to Georgia’s Prosecutor General, the alleged culprit in a deadly stabbing in a Thai massage parlour that left one woman dead and another severely injured had planned the attack beforehand and wanted to ‘kill transgender people’.

Vache Tsakashvili, 23, allegedly entered Thai Massage Najma, a massage parlour in central Tbilisi, on the night of 31 October whereupon he fatally attacked a woman with a knife, before attacking another woman who he stabbed in the throat. 

Neither of the victims’ names has been released to the public.

According to the Prosecutor’s Office, the deadly attack would have continued if not for ‘resistance’ from people at the massage parlour. Tsakashvili was apprehended by police several hours later.  

Both victims were trans women. The deceased was a citizen of Thailand.

According to the Prosecutor General’s statement, the accused went to a massage centre because he ‘wanted to kill transgender people on the grounds of intolerance of gender identity’.

If convicted, Tsakashvili faces 16–20 years or life in prison for pre-meditated murder.

What happened at the massage parlour

Following the news of the killing, local media released a video taken by the deceased victim immediately before the attack, which showed the man, apparently in a state of intoxication, trying to enter the parlour. 

In the video, the man is heard calling the victim ‘lover’ before trying to enter, as the parlour worker bars the door shut. 

One of the employees of the massage parlour, Madona Gachechiladze, said that the deceased had arrived in Georgia two weeks before her murder.

According to Gachechiladze, the culprit initially came to the parlour along with two other people, before returning alone. ‘As far as we know, some services were refused and then he returned with a knife’, she said.  

Speaking to journalists, Prosecutor Giorgi Kobuladze said that the deceased and the accused did not know each other prior to the killing. He also mentioned that the accused had visited the parlour several months prior.

‘He wanted to kill anyone who was in the facility at that time’, Kobuladze said. The deceased was ‘the first person he met’. 

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