Georgia’s deputy interior minister Gela Khvedelidze has admitted posting a video online of three journalists engaging in a threesome.

The video claims to feature Giorgi Paresashvili, a journalist who had been running high profile reports of senior government officials seizing businesses. The journalist has said that the video is “fabricated”.

“Gela Khvedelidze, for personal reasons, illegally circulated on the Internet footage of journalist Giorgi Paresashvili’s private life,” the interior ministry said in a statement. “The detainee admitted his guilt.”

Minister of Internal Affairs, Irakli Gharibashvili said: “I would like to inform the public that as a result of prompt and effective investigation, we found out all the factual circumstances of the offense relating to the personal life of George Paresashvili. First, the footages were shot by Constitutional Security department Georgia of the previous government, obviously illegally, for the purposes of the psychological impact and by persuading Giorgi Paresashvili to cooperate with them obscurely. The second, after the new government came to power these and other shots had been sealed according to the rule, but we have no guarantee that the copies are not in the hands of the representatives of the previous government. The third, I had entrusted to my former First Deputy, together with other persons, to ensure the safety of these and other illegal personnel. And the fourth, for me, this is a very unpleasant fact, my First Deputy, Gela Khvedelidze, unfortunately, not only has committed a crime, but an inappropriate behavior for an officer, especially, an employee of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. He accepted painfully and inadequately unfounded allegations against him released and, on the ground of revenge on Paresashvili, independently posted the footages on the Internet – space. My ex-deputy, Khvedelidze, is detained. The detainee confesses to the crime.”

Earlier this year, it was alleged that the former head of the military police, Megis Kardava, had formed a network of gay agents specifically for the purpose of forming relationships with “publicly well-known” men. Agents then covertly recorded sexual or private moments with them. The footage was used to blackmail the men into giving their public support for their regime. In some cases it was alleged that money was also extorted.