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Bank of Latvia governor made suspect in another criminal process headed by CPCB

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUIlmārs Rimšēvičs, governor of the Bank of Latvia, has been made suspect in another criminal process investigated by the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau.

It is currently unknown what Rimšēvičs is accused of or if this criminal case is somehow associated with ABLV Bank.

Rimšēvičs’ lawyer Juris Grīnvalds refrained from commenting on this case.

De Facto programme of LTV reported in March that CPCB commenced a criminal process following a request of ABLV Bank representatives and that it may or may not be associated with the FinCEN report, which mentioned possible bribery of Latvian state officials. Officials of ABLV Bank had previously categorically denied bribing officials. However, after publication of the report ABLV Bank representatives did turn to law enforcement institutions, including CPCB.

CPCB did not mention the specific section of the Criminal Law the criminal process was launched with. This week was no different – CPCB refused to disclose details of the criminal case. The only thing the bureau confirmed is that «persons involved in the process have the right for defence».

«CPCB has commenced a criminal process based on facts reported by ABLV Bank’s representatives. Investigation continues. With that, to avoid impeding it, CPCB refrains from providing more detailed information on it. We would like to outline that persons involved in the criminal process have the right for defence. No person is declared guilty until their guilt has been proven in accordance with judicial procedures,» CPCB comments.

Rimšēvičs and businessman Māris Martinsons are suspects in a criminal process headed by the Prosecutor General’s Office and which was previously investigated by CPCB. This summer the Prosecutor General raised charges against Rimšēvičs for bribery and Martinsons – for support of bribery.

Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau launched the criminal case against Bank of Latvia governor Ilmārs Rimšēvičs and businessman Māris Martinsons following requests from two unnamed Trasta komercbanka shareholders, as confirmed by the case’s supervisory prosecutor Viorika Jirgena.

She added that both shareholders are part of the criminal case. Both are bribe-givers who have been relieved of criminal liability because they confessed their crimes voluntarily.

Jirgena adds that one of the shareholders asked Rimšēvičs to assist in matters associated with Finance and Market Commission in 2010. In exchange for his assistance, Rimšēvičs was offered a paid vacation in Kamchatka. In 2012, the same shareholder together with another one turned to Rimšēvičs again with the same request. As payment, Rimšēvičs requested EUR 500,000 to be paid in two parts – one half before FCMC’s decision and the other after.

The prosecutor added during a press briefing that after the 2010 agreement Rimšēvičs had provided numerous consultations to the Trasta komercbanka shareholder, attempting to influence FCMC’s decisions. Consultations were provided after the 2012 agreement as well, but even though Rimšēvičs had succeeded influencing FCMC’s decisions, which was beneficial to his ‘client’, there had also been decisions that were not beneficial. One of the forms of assistance Rimšēvičs had provided the shareholder was helping prepare answers to questions from FCMC in regards to the bank’s profitability and matters associated with non-residents.

Jirgena explained that Rimšēvičs had failed to do what he had promised. Because of that, he was only paid EUR 250,000. According to the prosecutor, Martinsons played the part of the mediator in this case. He was also paid 10% of the bribe’s amount. The prosecutor adds that the bribe was paid in cash.


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