Latviski English По-русски
Monday 24.02.2020 | Name days: Diāna, Dina, Dins

Justice Minister: Justice does exist in Latvia, but it's selective

(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU

Latvian Justice Minister Jānis Bordāns

«I’m in politics precisely, because as a citizen and a lawyer, I wasn’t satisfied with the influence on the court and political system from people, operating outside these spheres. To my mind, this influence is the reason of long trials in Latvia. Another problem is the lack of specialists, who could solve economic crimes – if politicians would be very interested in this, many cases would have been solved over the past ten years. There are two options: there have either been unprofessional politicians, or they have been interested in having the situation remain the way it was,» said Latvian Justice Minister Jānis Bordāns in an interview with the BNN.

«Some criminal cases are launched, but others, of a similar content, are not»

To the mind of the Justice Minister, in Latvia, there is a problem with fair adherence to the court system, as is shown by the situation that some criminal cases are launched, whereas others, of a very similar content, are not.

«It is this influence on the law enforcement bodies from the outside – you can call it political or non-political influence – has created a kind of selective rule of law. As a result, justice does exist, but it applies to some people and doesn’t apply to others.»

Bordāns believes that the current Office of the Prosecutor General does not fulfil its duties efficiently enough. «Both the Moneyval report and the statement by the U.S. finance ministry about money laundering and corruption in Latvia is a direct issue of the investigative authorities.» According to the Justice Minister, the Prosecutor’s Office should play a leading role and bring strategic proposals both to the government and the Ministry of Justice.

Bordāns noted that previously the role of the Prosecutor’s Office was seen as belonging to the executive power branch of Latvia, whereas today it is structurally placed somewhere under the Supreme Court (SC). «The SC, in turn, cannot influence the Prosecutor’s Office. Thus, the Prosecutor’s Office is independent to such an extent that it has difficulties co-operating with the state, for example, in gaining support from the Ministry of Justice both in the aspects of funding and structure,» the politician added.

«Besides it is not clear, whether employees of the Prosecutor’s Office aren’t influenced by anybody from the outside,» said Bordāns. The Latvian Minister of Justice noted that to establish this, an audit is planned not only in the Prosecutor’s Office, but also in other institutions that are subordinate to the Ministry of Justice. An audit, Bordāns finds, would help determine, if the institutions, which are part of the justice system, are working effectively.

Post of Justice Minister – One of Party Favourites

For decades, the post of the Justice Minister has been a source of argument for almost every government, Bordāns believes. He also thinks that a number of justice ministers from some political parties have been more like chessmen in the post. According to Bordāns, it has been a kind of a compromise figure between political parties. The current Justice Minister assumes that some former justice ministers have been working under political influence.

«It’s an unresolved thing in Latvia. Political influence, starting already from the Justice Minister, is what has brought many crises to Latvia.»

Bordāns also told the BNN that in his efforts to increase efficiency in the court system, he also plans to address the way the Latvian Council of Sworn Advocates fulfils its duties, as the Minister sees room for improvement in court proceedings in making them more friendly and effective to the society as a whole.

«Prime Ministers Remember Rule of Law Only in Case of Financial Crisis»

To the mind of Bordāns, there are often heads of the Latvian government, whose thinking is focused on the assertion that the economy the basis of everything. «They remember rule of law only, when there’s a financial crisis, blaming the justice sector for not having dealt with the economic criminals, who have triggered the crisis.»

«If a Prime Minister would have the understanding of how the essential financial and economic issues can be solved by working together with the Justice Minister, this duo could change the situation in Latvia.»

According to Bordāns, with the political experience of Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš and a successful conversation, it is possible to increase the understanding, how Latvia is able to strengthen its rule of law with the help of closer co-operation between the Justice Minister and the head of the government.

Leave a reply

  1. Zerry says:

    There are structural problems. For example in state police. If somewhere in Olaine for exsmple, the police is slightly in grey area in performing their duties, the headmaster in Riga is ”out of map” and not able to do anything. And if company register fails, the responsible ministry is totally handless to solve anything. And the public image of country is still sinking, and respect of authorities as well.

Authorities concerned about Rimi and Maxima bread return practices

Following multiple uncovered problems with bread supply practices in retain trade, Latvia’s Competition Council has asked the largest market participants LLC Rimi Latvija and LLC Maxima Latvija to improve internal control processes, as reported by CC communication specialist Zane Gorškova.

EC not planning EU border closure over coronavirus outbreak in Italy

In the Schengen area and EU member state Italy, the dangerous coronavirus has been diagnosed to over 200 people, yet the closure of national boarders is not planned in Brussels, DW reports.

Employment among Latvian population reportedly at 65% in 2019

A total of 910 thousand people or 65 % of the population of Latvia aged 15–74 were employed in 2019. Compared to 2018, employment rate grew by 0.5 percentage points and number of employed persons by 0.6 thousand.

On 102th Independence Day, Estonians urged not to take freedom as granted

Estonia has turned 102. An independed state of Estonia was declared on February 24, 1918. «Freedom and independence are not to be taken for granted,» said Henn Põlluaas, the Estonian parliamentary speaker in an address, ERR reports.

Latvia’s unemployment level reportedly at 6.3% in 2019

61.3 thousand people aged 15–74 were unemployed in 2019. Compared to 2018, number of unemployed persons dropped by 11.5 thousand or 15.8 %.

Danish court officially decides to extradite Kristīne Misāne to Latvia

The Danish court has officially decided to have Latvian citizen Kristīne Misāne extradited to her home country, as confirmed by Misāne’s lawyer in Denmark Henrik Stagetorn.

Secret minutes reveal how Latvia prepared for Moneyval exam

Ministers of Latvian government, Financial Intelligence Service and the management of Finance Capital and Market Commission had likely gathered for a Finance Sector’s Development Council meeting prior to a plenary meeting of Moneyval, which was the first of the test towards Latvia avoiding getting greylisted for insufficient prevention of money laundering, as can be concluded from the restricted access document the details of which are revealed by LTV programme De Facto.

Lithuania’s Klaipėda spends 461 000 and learns it shouldn’t introduce trams

The Lithuanian port city of Klaipėda has spent a lot on a feasibility study into the development of public transport. The 461 000-euro study found that tram or a subway transit network would not be a substantiated choice of Lithuania’s third largest city, LRT reports.

Canary Islands hit by sand storm from Sahara; stops aviation

The Spanish Canary Islands have been hit by a sand storm from the Sahara Desert. Flights were cancelled and later resumed for the most part, BBC reports.

Latvia’s president promulgates Law on Dissolution of Riga City Council

On Monday, 24 February, Latvia’s President Egils Levits promulgated Saeima’s approved Law on Dissolution of Riga City Council.

S&P Global Rating upgrades Latvia’s credit rating to historically highest level

International credit rating agency S&P Global Rating has upgraded Latvia’s credit rating from A to A+ with stable future outlook, as mentioned in the agency’s published announcement.

Merkel’s Christian Democrats get bitter result in Hamburg election

German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union has received the poorest result in the federal state elections of Hamburg, according to British broadcaster BBC.

Reins over New Conservative Party once again handed over to Jānis Bordāns

Latvia’s Justice Minister Jānis Bordāns will be in charge of the New Conservative Party.

Italy hit by lethal coronavirus cases puts 11 towns on lockdown

In Italy, where three people infected with the coronavirus have died, a lockdown has been imposed on 11 towns to limit the spread of the dangerous virus infection, The Guardian reports.

Cold snap expected in Latvia in night hours this week

This week daytime air temperature in Latvia will not exceed +5° C. At night, however, air temperature will drop below 0° C, as reported by Latvian State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

Week in Lithuania: President proposes legislative initiatives, Tesla on lookout, Klaipėda Port faces fine

In Lithuania, the top news stories of the past week were President Gitanas Nausėda proposing nine legislative initiatives, US electric car maker Tesla considering a network of charging stations and Klaipėda Port facing a fine for allegedly discharging wastewater containing mercury.

BNN summary of the week: zoo without Līdaka. Misāne back in Latvia. Grey list avoided

The week continued with uncertainty over the situation with Latvian citizen Kristīne Misāne in Denmark. While the people were mobilizing and gathering signatures at website, Latvia’s Office of the Prosecutor General issued a European arrest order to have Misāne extradited to Latvia.

Financial Action Task Force decides to not add Latvia to its «grey list»

The world’s central anti-money laundering organization Financial Action Task Force has decided to not exercise increased monitoring of Latvia. This means the country will not be added to the organization’s «grey list», as LETA was informed by Latvian Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš’s office.

Latvian minister outlines Germany as an important strategic partner

Germany is a strategically important economic partner for Latvia, said Latvian Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs during his meeting with Germany’s Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Peter Altmaier on Friday, 21 February.

Access to illegal TV content denied to 11 000 Latvian households last year

In 2019 access to illegal TV content in Latvia was denied to 11 000 households. A dozen criminal processes have been commenced over illegal supply of audiovisual content, as reported by State Police.

Producer price level in Latvia’s industry down 1.3%

Compared to December 2019, the level of producer prices in Latvian industry didn't change in January 2020. Prices of products sold on the domestic market reduced by 0.7 %, but prices of exported products – increased by 0.7 %.

In China, coronavirus hits prisons as 500 prisoners and guards infected

In China, the outbreak of the dangerous coronavirus continues, over 500 cases of infections have been registered in prisons. Meanwhile, death toll from health problems related to the virus has reached 2 236, according to The Guardian.

Saudi Arabia provides Latvian companies stable tax regime

Latvia and Saudi Arabia have plans to provide businesses with stable tax regimes for companies working in each respective country without coverage from the other country’s regulations, as reported by Saeima’s press-service.

Estonia accuses Russia over large cyberattack against Georgia

Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu has stated that Estonia, just as Georgia and a number of Western countries, sees a Russian intelligence service as having perpetrated a large cyberattack on Georgia in autumn 2019, according to a statement on the web site of the Estonian Foreign Ministry.

Latvian Healthcare Ministry puts third stage of e-health project on hold

Healthcare Ministry plans to focus on existing e-health services and will not develop their next stage, said minister llze Viņķele at a press-briefing on Friday, 21 February.

Most read

Most commented

Newest comments

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!