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Wednesday 13.12.2017 | Name days: Veldze, Lūcija
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Authorities detain structural engineer as part of Zolitude tragedy case

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUIvars Sergets, who is the structural engineer of the collapsed Maxima supermarket in Zolitude, has been detailed by Latvian State Police as suspect in the criminal case, as confirmed by Serget’s lawyer, Arturs Zvejsalnieks.

Andris Gulbis, who performed the building’s construction evaluation, has also been recognized as one of the prime suspects in the criminal case.

Andris Gulbis is a member of the management board of GP Projektu Birojs. He owns 70.29% of shares in the company. The second owner of the company is Mārtiņš Pundurs with 29.41%.

After the tragedy, GP Projektu biroja explained that Gulbis had decided not to provide any comments on the tragedy in Zolitude and the examination of the supermarket’s construction project.

BNN had previously reported that names of the first suspects in the Zolitude tragedy case would be announced in the next couple of days.

Prosecutor General Kalnmeiers explains that private and legal persons may become suspects.

The prosecutor general refused to provide more detailed information, saying that this falls on the Latvian State police. He added that society will know the names of the suspects.

Answering the question on whether or not the potential suspects have fled Latvia and whether or not there may be problems with their arrest, Kalnmeiers said arrest is a measure that is applied only when suspects resist. He said none of the potential suspects have tried to resist. None of the potential suspects have tried to hide or in any way hinder the investigation, added Kalnmeiers.

In regard to continuing the investigation, the prosecutor general said he would not mention any specific dates, because ‘life always adds its own corrections’.

Because experts have provided their conclusions in the criminal case regarding the tragedy in Zolitude, the police hope to submit it to the prosecutor’s office to launch criminal prosecution in January, as confirmed by Chief of State Police Ints Kuzis.

In his interview to Rīta Panorāma programme of LTV, Kuzis noted that experiments were the most important stage in the investigation. Experts have provided their conclusions. He did not comment on the experts’ conclusions. He did say, however, that the investigation of the tragedy is going in accordance with the plan. Police hope the case will be submitted to the prosecutor’s office in January.

As it is known, a terrible disaster hit Zolitude on November 21st, 2013: the roof of a Maxima supermarket situated there caved in, killing 54 people, including three rescuers. Dozens of people were injured in this tragedy. Latvian State Police launched a criminal process shortly after the tragedy.

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