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Georgian Grenade Suspect To Face Terror Charges

Suspect Vladimir Arutyunian in hospital after his capture 26 July 2005 -- A Georgian lawyer defending the man police suspect of throwing a hand grenade at the Georgian and U.S. presidents during a May public appearance in Tbilisi said today that prosecutors have brought terror charges against her client.

Lawyer Guliko Jimsheladze said the suspect, 27-year-old Vladimir Arutyunian, partially confessed to tossing the grenade.

Officials say the grenade, which landed roughly 30 meters from the podium where Mikheil Saakashvili and George W. Bush were standing, did not go off due to a malfunction.

Jimsheladze said that, if found guilty, her client could be sentenced to up to 15 years in jail.

Arutyunyan was arrested last week in a Tbilisi suburb after killing one policeman in a shootout and receiving several gunshots.

He could face an additional 20 years in jail for the killing of the police officer.

(compiled from local television reports)