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Monday 23.01.2017 | Name days: Strauta, Grieta
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De Facto: the accused in Zolitude case found new companies

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUTwo of the companies involved in Zolitude criminal case and currently under investigation founded new companies last year, as reported by De Facto programme of LTV.

De Facto’s findings allow for the possibility that representatives of those two companies had possibly tried to protect themselves from potential property arrests and loss of money.

Architect Andris Kalinka is the author of the project for the now collapsed supermarket in Zolitude and is one of the accused in the Zolitude criminal case.

Following the tragedy in Zolitude, the turnover of Kalinka’s company – Kubs – declined dramatically: from EUR 634,395 in 2013 to EUR 322,308 in 2014. According to information from De Facto, Kubs has been gradually moving its activities to a new company lately.

BB studija was founded at the beginning of 2014. The office of this company is located in the same place as Kubs. The owner of BB studija is Baiba Ubavica. She is the daughter of Andris Kalinka’s sister. A quick look at the name of the person who registered the BB studija domain revealed Kalinka’s e-mail. Kalinka also drives around in a BMW registered as property owned by BB studija. Considering all of the above, it is hard to deny connection between the two companies.

There are other aspects that point to the connection between the two companies. This includes the fact that Kubs co-owner Dace Putnina has worked in BB studija’s interests. BB studija was founded mere months after the tragedy in Zolitude and before property arrests were applied to companies involved in the criminal process. De Facto sees this as an attempt to protect the income of Kalinka family. On top of that, Kalinka family was caught doing the same thing approximately one week after the collapse of Maxima in Zolitude. Four cars owned by the family were re-registered on a new company. Those cars were returned to Kubs after the scheme was uncovered.

Kubs also has close ties with another company involved in Zolitude case. Architect and co-owner of Kubs Dace Putnina is the wife of one of the owners of Re&Re – Didzis Putnins. In addition, Re&Re had tried to found a new company shortly after the collapse of Zolitude’s Maxima.

A new stock company was founded in August 2014 – RERE grupa. It’s Council has co-owners of Re&Re – Didzis Putnins and Ainars Paunins. It is stated in Lursoft database that Re&Re Capital is a stockholder in RERE grupa. Representatives of the newly-founded company refused to take part in an interview. When asked by De Facto programme is the main objective of this scheme is to hide actual beneficiaries and protect the company from a property arrest, the written reply did not shed any light: «Re&Re had come up with a development strategy well before the events of 2013. The company launched a reorganization in order to achieve a more effective company management model and provide high-quality services. The plan progressed in 2014. As a result, RERE GRUPA was formed. This company is a closed stock company and we are not at liberty to provide any information about stockholders of that company».

RERE Grupa began making money in 2015. Companies that part of it have begun winning procurements this year as well. An order worth EUR 522,911.92 from Salaspils Council has been received this year. Another order, worth EUR 937,393.99, has been received from Gailezers Hospital. Nevertheless, the more well-known Re&Re remains the most profitable company. Investigators asked the company’s assets to be arrested, but no such decision was made in the end.

Even after the tragic events in Zolitude, cooperation of companies involved in the construction of that building did not end. Two and a half years ago Stradins University Hospital signed a contract with SBRA, which includes Skonto būve and Re&Re, regarding the design and construction of a new ward for the hospital.

De Facto has found out that materials for the construction project were supplied by Vikom. This company was also involved in the construction of the collapsed Maxima building in Zolitude: VIkom had supplied metal constructions to Re&Re. Information that Vikom is also one of the suppliers in the hospital construction project can be found on the company’s website. The manager of the company did not want to talk about it. He only mentioned that Vikom cooperates with Skonto būve in Stradins University Hospital construction project, not Re&Re. Vikom is not mentioned among the accused in the Zolitude criminal case.

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