An impressive car park, tens of thousands of euro in cash and generous gifts – all this can be found in personal income declarations of the head of Riga Freeport, as found by De Facto programme of LTV. Two years ago, Loginovs received a luxurious Maybach in inheritance from his father.
Not only Loginovs, but also his wife and other family relatives either still work or had once worked in Riga Freeport. The work at the port is financially beneficial for the family. Because other members of Loginovs’ family do not have to submit declarations, it is unknown how rich Loginovs’ family actually is. Loginovs’ father Viktor, who was a fisherman, left his son inheritance two years ago. The value of this inheritance exceeds EUR 700,000. In addition, Loginovs received a luxurious Maybach from his father.
Unlike Loginov, Riga Freeport is not doing well financially. The number of passengers serviced by the freeport has declined in recent years. In addition, the Freeport has experienced a 10% decline in the volume of transshipped cargoes since 2014. «Yes, well that 1 million to 40 doesn’t say much and is not all that worthy of attention,» – Loginovs says about the decline in cargoes. He believes there is no need to pay attention to the charges raised against him and the criminal process launched by the police. It is possible that the sharp exchange of opinions between Loginovs and the head of State Audit Elita Krumina is meant to distract society from all uncovered facts in this case. Nevertheless, violations at Riga Freeport had been uncovered once before by another institution – Competition Council.
«The management of Riga Freeport, which had its own tug service provided, was doing everything it could to prevent competitors from entering the market to secure competition advantages for Riga Freeport Fleet. Violations surfaced in the form of refusal to sign contracts with PKL Fleet and issue the company permits to work in the Freeport area,» – believes Skaidrite Abrama, chairperson of the Competition Council. Initially, Riga Freeport Board refused to admit the violations uncovered by the Competition Council. RFB tried challenging CC in court. RFB lost the case. As a result, RFB was forced to comply with CC’s requirements and stop the provision of tug services. RFB was also forced to pay a fine of EUR 622,363.40. Loginovs provided no clear answers to De Facto’s questions in regards to this topic. Instead, he decided to voice accusations against Krumina: «She thinks she has higher marine education or something. She claims tugs are not used properly. I sometimes wonder why I spent nine years studying navigation and whether some of them at least have relevant education».
According to State Audit, litigations related to fines and violations have cost the Freeport more than EUR 1 million. But it is not the only wasted million. The Freeport has also gifted some company a warehouse on Krievu Island for EUR 1 million. In addition, the Freeport has also been outsourcing work that was supposed to be done by its own employees to other companies.
In less than one month’s time Loginovs will have to stand before a court. He stands accused of abuse of official power by performing (possibly) illegal donations. RFB, however, is confident that Loginovs is not a criminal. «If we talk about Liepaja Maritime School, there are acts. There are specific material investments. In regards to the port’s payments to victims of Fukushima catastrophe, similar payments were performed by all ports of the world. Those cannot be considered donations. It was a payment to the Red Cross,» – Riga Vice-Mayor Andris Ameriks explains the freeport’s stance on the matter.
Loginovs also has considerable political support. Previous attempts to dismiss Loginovs from his post all failed. The most recent accusations towards Loginovs are also meant to remove him from his post. Transport Minister Uldis Augulis from the Union of Greens and Farmers notes that it is first necessary to wait for a court ruling. Loginovs’ work, according to him, «should be reviewed by RFB to see if he can handle working in his post».
RFB has four representatives from Riga City Council and four representatives from ministries associated with the industry.
For most board members, except for Ameriks and Finance Ministry’s state secretary Baiba Bane, income earned in RFB had been the largest income earned in 2015. Each board member had been paid an average of approximately EUR 4,000 a month before taxes in 2015. In addition, work in RFB had brought them only additional income. RFB members are united in their refusal to publicly explain why each of them had voted in favour of Loginovs remainder in his post. None of them like him all that much, not do they go out of their way to point out flaws or any possible crimes in his management style.