Latviski English По-русски
Wednesday 16.01.2019 | Name days: Lida, Lidija

NCP member turns to corruption watchdog over Lembergs daughter’s offshore network

(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUMember of the New Conservative Party and former worker of Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau Juris Jurašs has submitted a request to the bureau, asking for an investigation of materials published by journalists about offshore network of the daughter of the suspended Ventspils Mayor Aivars Lembergs’, according to an announcement on social media.

Re:Baltica investigative journalism centre wrote that thanks to the latest information leak from legal persons registered in ‘tax havens’, at least partial value of properties owned by Aivars Lembergs daughter has surfaced for the first time.

According to Re:Baltica, after last year’s scandal with Mossack Fonseca, which was responsible for hiding actual properties and income of celebrities, oligarchs, criminals and other wealthy people, had sent a letter to a firm in Britain in March 2017.

The law firm in question did that in order to purge its list of clients. Two months after the leak that revealed the true assets of many well-known people, including associates of Russia’s president, Ukraine’s president, Iceland’s prime minister and famous football players, Mossack Fonseca was still unable to identify actual owner for more than 70% of approximately 39,000 companies registered in British Virgin Isles and Panama.

One of them was Hoshen Limited located in British Virgin Isles. Mossack Fonseca considered it too risky of a client. The amount of information available for it and its activities was insufficient to meet requirements of the law. Because of that, Mossack Fonseca decided to drop it.

In its response, the firm supplied a copy of the true beneficiary’s passport and their signed documents about the origin of money and the company’s place in the offshore network owned by them. The letter was signed by Līga Lemberga. In the supplied documents she mentioned that the money came from a trust fund, whose asset value is at least USD 10 million. She also mentioned she is a beneficiary in this trust fund.

After receiving more information in May 2017, Mossack Fonseca decided to continue cooperation with Hoshen Limited and its owner.

This is the first time news about property owned by Lembergs’ daughter have made it to the public space, Re:Baltica adds.

Re:Baltica gained access to documents as a member of International Research Journalism Consortium. The latest documents associated with Mossack Fonseca were provided by Suddeutsche Zeitung. While the previous documents covered the period of time until 2015, Panama 2 leak covered the period until the end of 2017. In the ‘old’ documents Lembergs daughter was mentioned as a director of some offshore firm, Re: Baltica adds.

Cerise Trust Savings, which was founded in 1992, which, according to Līga Lemberga, holds assets worth at least USD 10 million, only barely appear in Lembergs’ criminal case, Re:Baltica reports.

Swiss laywer Rudolf Meroni testified in the criminal case that Cerise Trust is a trust fund owned by Aivars Lembergs’ family. This fund also manages a number of other companies. Both of Lembergs’ children are mentioned as beneficiaries in another litigation – in London, where AS Latvian Shipping Company tried enforcing from Lembergs USD 135 million for international fraud.

So far documents state that Līga Lemberga became a beneficiary of the 1992-dounded trust fund in 2003. Unfortunately, the real owners of Bachmann Trust Company (founded Cerise Trust) remain unknown. Ventspils businessman Olafs Berķis testified in court that following Aivars Lembergs’ orders he put Bachmann Trust Company as a shareholder in other companies associated with business in Ventspils.

The newly-uncovered network of companies is not featured in Lembergs’ criminal case, Re:Baltica underlines. Most companies were registered after Lembergs was called in to Riga Regional Court in 2008.

Re:Baltica reports that it is unknown why Līga Lemberga or the trust fund need a network of offshores.

In his response to journalists, Lembergs said his children are 42 and 43 years old and can make their own independent life choices.

Leave a reply

Karolis Sankovski appointed as chairman of RB Rail council

A new council chairman has been appointed in Baltic joint company RB Rail. Riia Sillave and Edvīns Bērziņš were picked as vice-chairmen, as the company reports.

airBaltic carried record number of passengers in 2018 – 4.1 million

Latvian airBaltic airline carried a total of 4,136,711 passengers to different destinations in 2018. This is 17% more when compared to 2017. The number of passengers carried in 2018 is airBaltic’s all-time highest, as BNN was told by the company.

KPV LV to decide on dismissing Kaimiņš as vice-chairman of party’s faction

KPV LV party’s Saeima faction plans to discuss the proposal of dismissing Artuss Kaimiņš from the post of the faction’s vice-chairman.

Latvian minister sceptical about abolishing MPC system without litigations

Latvia’s Economy Minister Arvils Ašeradens does not expect abolishment of the mandatory procurement component system this year to pass without litigations.

Latvian parties agree on 90% of content of coalition cooperation agreement

Parties of the forming coalition move towards a cooperation model in which matters are resolved based on the principle of consensus, says prime minister candidate Krišjānis Kariņš from New Unity.

What do Britons actually want? Reactions from EU politicians

Commenting on the rejected deal of UK withdrawal, leaders of the European Union and member states, which are British neighbours, are seeking clarity over the exit scenario London would prefer if the British really want to leave.

Ministry fails to coordinate decision regarding Riga City Council’s dismissal

On Tuesday, 15 January, Latvia’s Environment Protection and Regional Development Ministry failed to coordinate the latest redaction of the decision project On the Dismissal of Riga City Council, because the Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments and Latvian Association of Large Cities objected it.

UK rejects Brexit deal, May faces no-confidence vote

British Prime Minister Theresea May hopes to overcome a vote of no confidence in her government, following the rejection of her Brexit deal in the UK Parliament.

Is polygamy the answer for Latvia? «Demographic affairs expert» Parādnieks is the man for the job!

The government formation process in Latvia is progressing slowly and painfully. It is as though a ship without navigation – Latvia has yet to find its way in the ocean of political roads. And this ocean I full of «icebergs» Latvia keeps bumping against. The latest one is National Alliance’s official candidate, an «expert» at resolving demographic problems Imants Parādnieks.

Latvian government approves unified requirements for road and street construction quality

On Tuesday, 15 January, Latvian government approved a project of rules from the Cabinet of Ministers. The goal of this project is ensuring rational use of public funds for road and street construction.

Strike in German airports cancels hundreds of flights

Several hundred flights have been cancelled in German airports on January 15, because of strike as part of an airport worker wage dispute. Germany's powerful Verdi union has announced the strike would last from 02:00 am until 8:00 pm local time at the airports of Frankfurt, Munich, Hanover, Bremen, Hamburg, Leipzig, Dresden and Erfurt.

Saeima proposes applying labour protection requirements for topical employment trends

Considering the emergence of new forms of employment, when work is often performed remotely outside company premises, it is necessary to adapt labour protection requirements.

Opinion: final decision for next Daugavpils mayoral candidate is not yet made

Although on Thursday, 17 January, Daugavpils City Council plans to elect a new mayor and Andrejs Elksniņš is mentioned among the candidates, the final decision has yet to be made, claims former mayor Rihards Eigims, who was dismissed in November.

Tallinn Port sees record passenger number of 10.6 million

Estonia's largest passenger port in Tallinn has registered 11th year of growth in passenger numbers as the year 2018 has ended with a total of 10.6 million passengers.

Additional funding requested for continuation of publication of KGB files

Constitution Protection Bureau’s Centre for the Documentation of the Consequences of Totalitarianism requests additional funding of EUR 51,976 to continue financing the digitization of remaining KGB files before 30 April.

Latvian authorities announce influenza epidemic in the country

Last week, the number of patients with flu in Valmiera reached the threshold of an epidemic – 163.6 cases per 100,000 residents. With that, 15 January was declared the beginning of an influenza epidemic in Latvia, BNN was told by Disease Prevention and Control Centre.

Government declaration proposals may cost Latvia EUR 600 million this year

If all proposals submitted for the government declaration were to be implemented this year, it would require an additional amount of EUR 660 million, prime minister candidate Krišjānis Kariņš told journalists.

Stabbed Polish mayor dies

In Poland, the long-time mayor of Gdańsk Paweł Adamowicz has died after doctors were unable to save him following a knife attack during a charity event.

Police: cocaine shipment from Ecuador was not meant for Latvian market

The shipment of cocaine sent from Ecuador and intercepted in Koknese was likely not meant for Latvian market, says Chief of State Police Main Criminal Police Department Andrejs Grišins.

Forming government in Latvia may develop new Local Governments Law

Prime minister candidate Krišjāņis Kariņš’s formed government could develop a new Local Government Law, according to information compiled for government declaration ideas from members of the work group.

«Osinovskis’ million» case: Elksniņš requested money «for KNAB»

Several years ago there was a scandal caused by the announcement made by the now former investigator of Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) and now Saeima deputy Juris Jurašs that he was offered a two million euros bribe in the LDz corruption case.

Businessman Martinsons’ fast loan company’s paid interest compost most of Ameriks’ income

A month ago, Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau performed 30 searches and detained 7 people as part of an investigation of possible corruptive activities at Rīgas satiksme. Among those people is Honour to Serve Riga political party member Aleksandrs Krjačeks.

Bank: this year’s priority will be restoring finance sector’s reputation

This year’s priority will be ensuring sustainable development and restoration of the finance sector’s reputation, says chairman of Baltic International Bank Viktors Bolbats.

Weather in Latvia to be chilly and windy this week

Weather will be volatile in Latvia this week – a reasonable amount of thaw along with chilly air is expected. Latvia’s State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre predicts strong wind and plenty of precipitation.

Week in Lithuania. Ruling LFGU initiates referendum to reduce number of MPs

Members of the ruling Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union will collect signatures for a referendum to reduce the size of the parliament.