By Ruzanna Khachatrian
Armenian law-enforcement authorities have still not made any arrests in connection with the shock murder of a senior regional prosecutor, Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian said on Tuesday.
Albert Ghazarian, the chief prosecutor of the northern Lori province, was gunned down outside his home in the regional capital Vanadzor on August 26 in still unclear circumstances. Armenia’s three main law-enforcement agencies swiftly launched a joint investigation into the high-profile murder, pledging to identify its masterminds and perpetrators.
“As of today, we have not arrested anyone,” Hovsepian told RFE/RL. “The investigation into the case remains under my direct control. We have many hypotheses, almost all of which relate to Albert Ghazarian’s activities as prosecutor of the Lori region.”
“I hope that the case will be solved,” he said.
Hovsepian would not say if any of the theories of the crime considered by the investigators are connected to Ghazarian’s strained relationship with Vanadzor Mayor Samvel Darpinian and Lori’s former Governor Henrik Kochinian. “All theories are being examined,” he said without elaborating.
Darpinian and Kochinian are among local government officials figuring in a embezzlement case brought by the Lori prosecutor’s office last June. They are suspected of a large-scale theft of equipment from a local sewage works which allegedly occurred during the 1990s.
Ghazarian’s murder was strongly condemned by President Robert Kocharian and the leaders of the country’s main political parties. The Office of the Prosecutor-General pledged to take “all necessary measures to clarify all circumstances of the crime and identify the guilty.”