bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Saturday 23.09.2017 | Name days: Vanda, Veneranda, Venija
LatviaLatvia

NP: SRS director to explain why Finance Police ended VAT scam case with Šlesers home

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUThe oligarch case viewed with new eyes forces questions not only about Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau’s and prosecutors’ ability to prove corruption, but also the efficiency of work performed by State Revenue Service’s Finance Police, Nekā personīga programme notes.

At the same time, the programme reports that the section of the oligarch case revolving around possible tax manipulations with the construction of former politician Ainārs Šlesers’ home has been revived and sent to investigators for repeated review.

«Ex-politician and businessman Ainārs Šlesers visited his house on the coast of the sea in Melluži this week. Gates of the fenced-off territory remain closed. Šlesers does not come out. The only thing he says on the phone is that he is a private individual and is therefore not obligated to speak with the press,» journalists detail their observations.

Journalists also mention that seven years ago, Šlesers, as Vice-Mayor of Riga, organized a meeting with journalists in that exact place. He was forced to do that because nature activists opposed chopping down trees in the protected area the politician picked as the spot for his family home, NP reports.

According to information from Nekā personīga, SRS did turn against Šlesers family’s owned company Avadel, requesting a payment of EUR 225,280 in VAT. SRS launched an audit in the company because there were suspicions about Šlesers, possibly, not paying all taxes during the construction of his private home.

Journalists also say that SRS officials were certain the company in question has no rights for VAT returns because ownership of the building belongs to Šlesers family, not the company. SRS also calculated the fine for the company. However, SRS Director General Nellija Jezdakova decided to end the case in November 2010. She cancelled the decision made by inspectors because be important documents surfaced. This allowed Avadel recover the entire VAT amount from the state budget.

It should be said that Ridzene talks have breathed new life into the case. There are also rumours of new contracts being in development for Šlesers family to lease houses from Avadel and, possibly, purchase them in the future. KNAB investigators think those contracts were signed retroactively.

Talks recorded by KNAB in Ridzene Hotel reveal that all cases were settled by SRS. Šlesers and Avadel board member Ivars Gulbis met at Ridzene Hotel in November 2010 – exactly when the unfavourable SRS’ decision was still in force. Šlesers and Gulbis agreed to look for a person who would resolve problems with SRS. It was mentioned in talks that a purchase intention contract was necessary. This contract would provide Šlesers family with the right to purchase the house after its completion, journalists say.

«Those documents surfaced in SRS at the last moment, creating suspicion that someone may have consulted them from the inside. The tax expert could not recall if any decisions regarding future intention documents were cancelled as part of the VAT case,» Nekā personīga reports.

In a conversation with Nekā personīga, tax consultant Ainis Dābols commented: «I’ll be honest, in more than 20 years of my career, SRS inspectors have never considered such contracts. The question is why this information was not available during the audit.»

It is also mentioned that KNAB sent a separated case involving Šlesers and Gulbis to Finance Police. An investigation was commenced regarding the possible tax avoidance by Avadel officials. Unfortunately, this case was ended abruptly on 30 December 2015.

The programme also presented an archive containing comments from former SRS Finance Police Chief Kaspars Podiņš: «The company was bought while the investigation was underway. The company that sold the house transferred more than EUR 300,000 to the state budget. This means no damage was done to the state budget.»

The tax expert interviewed by NP says that the end of the administrative case does not provide any reason to end the criminal case. This is because the criminal case assesses one’s responsibility for any fraud attempt that may have taken place.

Dābols: «It is definitely cannot be considered a good reason for ending a criminal process. That’s my opinion, at least. A similar example is when a thief steals a jar and returns it filled with jam – this does not mean he is not a thief.»

Journalists are unable to check if the company truly sold the house in 2015. Avadel’s annual accounts do not offer a full picture. But Šlesers family’s house does not have an extended construction permit. It has yet to be commissioned. Because of that, this property is not registered with the land book. Because of that, there is no need to report the deal.

SRS Director General Ilze Cirule told the programme: «If the analysis shows that there is room to uncover new facts, we are prepared to perform an audit for the past three years. We do that in critical situations.»

When asked if there is a reason to request such an audit now, Cirule said: «Right now I do not have a reason».

Ref: 225.109.109.5209


Leave a reply

Kariņš: Unity started drifting when Valdis Dombrovskis left is management

Unity should seriously consider the option of starting in Saeima elections alongside other parties, said MEP Krišjānis Kariņš in an interview to Latvijas Radio.

CSP: average size of agricultural areas increases in Latvia

In 2016 the average size of agricultural holding constituted 43.2 ha, which is 15.5 % more than in 2013 when the average land area per holding accounted for 37.4 ha. The total standard output has risen by 24.5 %. Nevertheless, the number of economically active farms has reduced by 14.5 %.

Antāne forms a new political party in Ventspils with more than 350 associates

A new political party was founded in Ventspils this Thursday, 21 September. The name of this new party is Laiks Pārmaiņām (Time for Changes). The initiator of the founding of this new party is Baltic Association – Transport and Logistics President Inga Antāne.

NATO: suspicions about Zapad 2017 were justified

NATO views its suspicions about Russian-Belarusian Zapad 2017 military exercises as well-justified, because their scale and geography were larger than what was officially stated.

Expert: Latvia’s electronic industry productivity index on a rise

Electronics industry is the most rapidly growing processing industry in Latvia. This industry’s turnover growth in Latvia has been more rapid than that of Europe and the rest of Baltic States, says manager of wholesale trade company Lemona Latvija Sergejs Nikiforovs.

Video: How to make white-water rafting more dangerous?

If you think white-water rafting is a piece of cake, you can try getting over some rapids on six rafts.

Kaimiņš: Lembergs is Latvia’s biggest misfortune

It is no secret to anyone that the parliamentary committee in charge of investigating Oligarch case has so-called experts that are closely associated with infamous Ventspils politician Aivars Lembergs or his family. In an interview to BNN, Saeima member Artuss Kaimiņš shared his opinion about the latest scandalous development associated with Oligarch talks. He calls Lembergs Latvia’s biggest misfortune.

EC: Money for Rail Baltica in next period will be negotiated

Funding of the Rail Baltica railway project after the year 2020 will be negotiated upon as part of the EU's financial plan for the next period, has stated the European Commissioner for Mobility and Transport.

Sudraba published «false information» on parliamentary committee’s website

Parliamentarian Andrejs Judins asks to evaluate Inguna Sudraba’s possible breach of ethics with the publication of ‘false information’ on the website of Saeima’s parliamentary investigation committee responsible for the investigation of oligarch case.

Estonia plans to direct 300 million euros to healthcare

With the aim of improving the quality and access to Estonian healthcare, the country's government has backed amendments, which set forth increasing healthcare funding by 300 million over a period of five years

HTC agrees to sell part of its innovators and intellectual property to Google

U.S. computer technology firm Google has reached a deal with Taiwanese smartphone-maker HTC so that the latter would share part of its product development team and allow using HTC intellectual property.

22-year sentence for Imanta paedophile comes into force

With the Supreme Court of Justice abandoning the review of Riga Regional Court’s ruling, the 22-year sentence for the man prosecuted in the so-called Imanta paedophile case has come into force, as reported by the court.

Weekend in Latvia expected to be warm and sunny

The sky in Latvia will become clear during the day on Friday, 22 September. Rain is only expected to come to certain western areas. Air temperature will likely reach +16° C… +20° C, whereas air temperature at night will drop to +9° C… +14° C, as reported by State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

UK to offer EU 20 billion euros, if it can remain in single market

British Prime Minister Theresa May plans to offer a transitional agreement with the European Union that would concern a two-year period until the country leaves the bloc in 2019.

Number of bankruptcies down in Latvia and Estonia but up in Lithuania

Last year, the number of bankruptcies declined 12.4% in Latvia and 10.9% in Estonia. Lithuania, on the other hand, had experienced a 35.2% increase in the number of bankrupt companies, according to information compiled by Coface.

Lithuania sets off alarm bells over quality of international brands' foods

What Lithuania‘s State Food and Veterinary service announced last Tuesday was big news in Lithuania, but not so of a discovery to the majority of Eastern European consumers - food of international brands sold in Western Europe and in Eastern Europe, and Lithuania, are not just the same.

Saeima forms a group to support HIV and tuberculosis patients

On Thursday, 21 September, Latvia’s Saeima agreed with deputy Hosams Abu Meri’s proposal to form a deputy group to support HIV and tuberculosis patients, as confirmed by Abu Meri’s assistant Edgars Ikstens.

Politologist comments whether Vējoņis’ authority is at risk or not

Saeima’s vote in which Latvian President Raimonds Vējoņis’ proposal on the status of non-citizens’ children was not pushed forward was as though a strike against the president’s authority, comments Filips Rajevskis.

In pictures: Mexicans rush to find quake survivors

A massive rescue effort is continuing in Mexico City and other areas in Mexico to find possible survivors caught under buildings that collapsed in the September 19 earthquake, which has killed no less than 237 people.

Producer prices in industry grew 0.1% in August

Compared to July, the level of producer prices in Latvian industry rose by 0.1 % in August 2017. Prices of products sold on the domestic market, as well as those of exported products grew by 0.1 %.

Saeima supports simplification of investigation of less serious crimes

On Thursday, 21 September, Latvia’s Saeima conceptually supported changes to the Criminal Process Law that provide for simplification of investigation procedures of less serious crimes.

Ozoliņš: transit and logistics industries should communicate more actively

Mutual communication and information exchange among businesses working in the industry is the pre-condition for improvement of Latvia’s transit industry, said Transport Ministry’s state secretary Kaspars Ozoliņš at a meeting of the Logistics Council.

As Estonia mends ID cyber vulnerability, officials recommended mobile ID

As Estonia tries to solve potential security risks found in the chips of 750,000 national ID cards, state officials using e-services have been recommended to Mobile-ID in addition to ID cards.

Vējonis: peaceful resolution of Ukraine’s conflict is Latvia’s priority

«Russia’s unjustified aggression towards its neighbours is a serious breach of international law. Any aggressor who begins and continues such conflicts should be brought to justice for breach of international law,» says Latvian President Raimonds Vējonis.

Authorities apprehend criminal group that caused 1.7 million euros worth of damage to the state

Latvian State Revenue Service’s Finance Police in cooperation with State Police anti-terrorism unit Omega neutralized a criminal group that specialized in VAT fraud and money laundering, as confirmed by SRS representative Evita Teice-Mamaja.

Newest comments