Daily magazine about Latvia www.latviannews.lv
The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.
Samuel Johnson
Russian version

Attorney General: Lemberg’s case and other notorious litigations

Eriks Kalnmeiers. Photo: Lita Krone/LETA.
 Over H1 of this year the court of first instance might make verdicts on so-called Digitalgate affair with 23 persons as defendants. Such speculation in his interview to Freecity.lv made the Attorney General Eriks Kalnmeiers. “I do hope that over the first six months of 2013 the proceedings of the court of first instance will be completed,” says the Attorney General.

He also offered comments on a string of other notorious criminal cases.

In the case of Latvenergo that was recently submitted by the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) to the prosecutor’s office has been commenced the indictment procedure. To three out of 17 executive officers charges are already pressed. “Currently under preparation are indictments to the remaining persons, in progress are liaisons with foreign countries also involved in the process,” tells Eriks Kalnmeiers. “The press recently revealed the information that the prosecutor’s office of Switzerland has filed an enormous pecuniary suit against the French Alstom. We will follow their path.”

Hopes pinned on KNAB

It is expected that this year KNAB is going to submit to the prosecutor’s officer the notorious Daimler case, involving alleged corruption in Riga City Council. “Head of the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) Mr Strelcenoks has indicated that this will be the next case to be assigned by the Bureau to the prosecutor’s office,” reminded the Attorney General. “It is logical to assume that in 2013 it (the Daimler case — Red.) will be assigned. If within one year they are unable to prepare and submit to the prosecutor’s office at least one criminal case, the expediency of existence of such bureau should be under serious doubt.”

Strelcenoks also has promised to submit to the prosecutor’s office so-called “oligarchs’ case”. In this regard Eriks Kalnmeiers remarked: “It is about hidden ownership of the capital shares in foreign companies, which requires information about their registration, yet here we talk about off-shore entities.” And added: “Collection of information on the actual owners of off-shore companies is cumbersome, yet possible.”

Antonov is cooperating

Another sensational case - that of Krājbanka currently is under the police investigation. Right now there are no more than suspects and is too early to talk about indictments. However, Latvia, as well as Lithuania has certain claims to the former owner of the bank Antonov, who lives in London. Why Lithuanians strive for his extradition, while Latvians do not, asks Freecity.lv. 

“Because Lithuania has issued the European arrest warrant immediately after commencement of criminal proceedings; moreover, they started the proceedings before us. In Latvia the investigation is in progress, and we have no need to initiate extradition. If Antonov will be extradited to Lithuania we will also be able to work with him, conduct interrogations. Our investigator now is able contact him, arrange for conference calls. Might as well travel to England for interrogation. Antonov is cooperating, he is accessible,” explained the Attorney General.

Mayor or not?

Eriks Kalnmeiers also gave some comments on so-called “Lemberg’s case”, seeing that he is seemingly suspended, yet anyway continues to be the mayor.  

“His first suspension was imposed according to criminal procedure. No one has revoked this resolution ever since. Yet, the actions conducted by the minister (Sprudzs - Red.) were entirely the matter of his competency. According to the criminal procedure, if someone is suspended from office their title is retained. For example, we suspend a forest officer - formally he still retains the office, yet without actually performing his duties.” 

To Freecity.lv request to tell when some outcome can be expected in this very complicated and tangled matter involving Lembergs, the Attorney General answered: “I can not predict, as otherwise it might be considered a pressure on the court, as if I were urging them.”
Before the comment please read the rules of use our webpage.. Thank you.