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Bank of Latvia governor delegates representation authority in ECB to his assistant

Ilmārs Rimšēvičs/flickr.com/Bank of Latvia.
Governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs has given the bank’s vice-governor Zoja Razmusa the authority to represent the bank in the European Central Bank Council, as confirmed by the bank’s press-secretary Jānis Silakalns.

He says that this means Razmusa is thereby able to participate in the meeting of ECB Council in Frankfurt 12th and 13th and September.

Silakalnks also notes that Razmusa has taken part in past meetings, but without voting rights.

As previously reported, following an order from the EU Court, Latvia’s Prosecutor General’s Office has clarified the security measure applied to Rimšēvičs, permitting him to appoint his replacement to the Council of the European Bank.

The security measure was not changed – only clarified that he has the right to appoint his replacement to the ECB Council.

The court reviewed the request from ECB on interim injunction, in which the central bank requested Latvia to halt the restriction for Rimšēvičs to perform his duties as governor of the Bank of Latvia so that he is at the very least able to appoint his replacement in the ECB Council.

On 20 July, deputy chairman of EU Court issued an order in accordance with which Latvia is to perform the necessary measures to ensure that until the final verdict is ruled in the criminal case involving Rimšēvičs, security measures imposed by the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau against him are to be put on hold as far as necessary so that they do not prevent him from performing his duties as a member of ECB Council.

Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau launched the criminal case against Bank of Latvia governor Ilmārs Rimšēvičs and businessman Māris Martinsons following requests from two unnamed Trasta komercbanka shareholders, as confirmed by the case’s supervisory prosecutor Viorika Jirgena.

She added that both shareholders are part of the criminal case. Both are bribe-givers who have been relieved of criminal liability because they confessed their crimes voluntarily.

Jirgena adds that one of the shareholders asked Rimšēvičs to assist in matters associated with Finance and Market Commission in 2010. In exchange for his assistance, Rimšēvičs was offered a paid vacation in Kamchatka. In 2012, the same shareholder together with another one turned to Rimšēvičs again with the same request. As payment, Rimšēvičs requested EUR 500,000 to be paid in two parts – one half before FCMC’s decision and the other after.

The prosecutor added during a press briefing that after the 2010 agreement Rimšēvičs had provided numerous consultations to the Trasta komercbanka shareholder, attempting to influence FCMC’s decisions. Consultations were provided after the 2012 agreement as well, but even though Rimšēvičs had succeeded influencing FCMC’s decisions, which was beneficial to his ‘client’, there had also been decisions that were not beneficial. One of the forms of assistance Rimšēvičs had provided the shareholder was helping prepare answers to questions from FCMC in regards to the bank’s profitability and matters associated with non-residents.

Jirgena explained that Rimšēvičs had failed to do what he had promised. Because of that, he was only paid EUR 250,000. According to the prosecutor, Martinsons played the part of the mediator in this case. He was also paid 10% of the bribe’s amount. The prosecutor adds that the bribe was paid in cash.


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