Latvia's LB Governor Ilmars Rimsevics is suspected of further criminal proceedings against the Office for the Prevention of Corruption and the Fight against Corruption (KNAB), according to information available at LETA.
It is not publicly disclosed which articles of the Criminal Code are imputed to Rimsēvič, and whether this case may be related to the events surrounding ABLV Bank. Latvian television also said that Rimsevic was in suspicion of the two articles of the Criminal Code – bribery and abuse of official status.
Rimševič's lawyer, Juris Grīnvalds, abstained from voting on the case. Also, the second lawyer, former Aldis Pundurs, former Attorney General, did not comment on whether Rimsevic is accused of incorrectly informing the US authorities of "ABLV Bank". Similarly, Ernests Bernis, the co-owner of ABLV Bank, which was to be liquidated, also did not comment.
The Latvian television program de facto announced in March this year that KNAB had initiated criminal proceedings after ABLV Bank representatives were represented, and the criminal proceedings could directly or indirectly concern the Financial Crisis Finance Authority of the United States Department of Finance (FinCEN), who mentioned possible Latvian bribery public officials. Management of ABLV Bank categorically refused bribes, but after the release of the report, he appealed to several law enforcement bodies, including KNAB.
KNAB did not find any criminal proceedings initiated under the Criminal Code. Also this week, KNAB LETA did not disclose which articles of the Criminal Code are being investigated and whether they are suspicious, but in a comment published in the e-mail, the Office states that "the persons involved in the proceedings have a right of defense".
"KNAB Records Criminal Proceedings in Connection with the Facts of ABLV Bank Officials The investigation is conducted in criminal proceedings, so the CPCB does not provide more detailed information on the specific criminal proceedings and the persons involved in it, the right of defense and declares that no person has committed no fault of committing an offense in a manner prescribed by law, "says KNAB.
Rimšēvičs and entrepreneur Maris Martinsons are currently charged with other criminal proceedings, which are at the Prosecutor General's Office and have been previously investigated by the KNAB. The Prosecutor General's Office in Rimšēvičas was blamed for bribery this year, while Martinson was accused of bribery.
Victoria prosecutor Viorika Jirgen said that KNAB initiated the case after the two shareholders of AS Trasta komercbanka (TKB) were presented. Both shareholders appeared in the case in question as bribes but were released from criminal responsibility because they volunteered to contact law enforcement authorities with information on the incident.
Jirgens said one of the shareholders appealed to Rimsevich in 2010 with a request for assistance in matters concerning the Financial and Capital Market Commission (FCMC), in exchange for having paid Rimsęvić a recreational trip to Kamchatka. In 2012, this shareholder, together with another, will turn to Rimsevic again and ask for help on other issues related to the FCMC. Rimsevich asked for a payment of 500,000 euros, which would be paid in two installments – one before and one after the FCMC decision.
The Public Prosecutor stressed that, following a 2010 agreement, Rimsevics repeatedly advised TKB's shareholders and thus tried to influence the decision of the FCMC. Such consultations were also provided after an agreement in 2012, but even though Rimsevic was able to influence the FCMC to take decisions that were allegedly favorable to TKB, they also adopted decisions that were unfavorable. As one of the forms of assistance provided by Rimsevic, the public prosecutor mentioned assistance in preparing answers to questions raised by FCMC regarding the liquidity of banks and non-residents.
Jirgens also explained that Rimsevich did not complete his application, so only the first part or 250,000 euros was paid. According to the prosecutor, Martinson played as an intermediary in this crime – he received 10% of the total bribe. The prosecutor added that the bribes were made in cash.
Conversely, the State Police (VP) proceeds from criminal proceedings against Grims Guseļņikov, owner of Norvik Bank, against Rimsevics. Guselnikov publicly asserted that Rimsevich summers bribes from his credit institution.
Guseļņikov sent a letter in February last December on the alleged determination of Latvian officials to withdraw bribes from him. Earlier this year the police publicly announced the commencement of criminal proceedings. Criminal proceedings have been launched to arrest and launder money. In this criminal proceedings, the facts listed in the largest request of the shareholders of Norvik Bank are examined.
VP spokeswoman Ilze Jurevica said the criminal proceedings will continue to investigate and verify the information provided. At present, no person in criminal proceedings has the equivalent status of a suspect, but for the sake of investigation, the vice president is not currently present at all.