Jack Shepherd To Be Kept In Custody In Georgia For 3 Months
25 January 2019, 12:22 | Updated: 25 January 2019, 12:24
A man convicted over the death of a woman from Essex who was killed in a speedboat crash London, has appeared in court in Georgia.
Jack Shepherd will stay in custody in the country for three months ahead of extradition proceedings, which he intends to fight.
Last year, the 31 year old was found guilty of the manslaughter of Charlotte Brown from Clacton on Sea.
Appearing at Tbilisi City Court today, Shepher said the decision to go on a speedboat date on the River Thames in London in 2015 with 24 year old Charlotte was his "greatest regret".
Assisted by an interpreter as he sat in the dock, the court heard Shepherd, who arrived in Georgia in March last year, speak of his regret at missing his trial and the impact on Ms Brown's family.
He said: "Not a single day passes when I don't think about the loss of Charlotte's life and the effect this has had on her family.
"Some time after the accident I felt suicidally depressed at what had happened.
"That's why I've been unable to speak about it."
One of his defence lawyers said Shepherd should not be extradited because he was warned in a phone call that his life might be in danger if he goes to a UK jail.
As he addressed the court, Shepherd, who has been working in Georgia, revealed he wished he had sat down with Ms Brown's family and explained what had happened.
"I can see that not to have done so has caused them great pain and suffering," he said.
"I'm very sorry for that and that's why I handed myself in now just to draw to a close this horrible accident and all the terrible consequences."
The court also heard that Shepherd has alcohol dependency and wants to conduct the appeal against his conviction from Georgia.
He surrendered himself at a police station in Tbilisi, Georgia's capital, on Wednesday.
Shepherd, originally from Exeter, went on the run before his trial at the Old Bailey and jurors found him guilty of manslaughter by gross negligence.
He was sentenced to six years in jail but remained at liberty.
The Crown Prosecution Service said prosecutors are currently "consulting with the authorities in Georgia to progress our extradition request".
Cabinet ministers were among those celebrating his surrender, and Theresa May's official spokesman said the Prime Minister "welcomes the news that he is now in custody".
He added: "The Government will now work alongside the police and the Crown Prosecution Service to ensure that extradition proceedings are expedited."