A murder investigation is underway in Georgia following the death of an Irish man there, local police have confirmed.
The body of Thomas Kennedy (28), originally from Co Mayo, was discovered in the Mtkvari River in the Georgian city of Gori on Saturday, October 9th.
Four people are charged with premeditated murder committed in group under aggravated circumstances, according to a statement from officers of the Shida Kartli Police Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
A fifth person is charged with non-reporting of the “especially grave” crime, the statement said.
Reports say Mr Kennedy was socialising with a group of Georgian nationals when a row broke out.
Efforts are underway to repatriate Mr Kennedy's body to Ireland. His family have set up a GoFundMe page to fundraise to bring him home.
The GoFundMe page alleges Mr Kennedy died “brutally and tragically” at the hands of five men.
"We are absolutely devastated, there are no words, life will never be the same again without our beautiful talented boy," his cousin Olivia Barrett said.
“It is currently very difficult to repatriate Tom home due to the Covid-19 restrictions, so we are setting up this GoFundMe Page to raise funds to bring Tom home as soon as possible,” a statement on the page said.
The repatriation was "costly, and with the help of the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust, we will get him to his beloved home of County Mayo," it said.
The family aimed to raise money in order to fund the expenses associated with Tom’s passing, including repatriation, the funeral cost, and for Tom’s family to travel to Georgia for a trial.
The GoFundMe page can be found here.