A look into charges: how Lembergs earned 600,000 euros at Ventspils residents’ expense
Using offshore companies, Lembergs’ family has been indirectly controlling companies in Latvia for years. On top of that, Lembergs has been actively using his official posts to ensure profits for those companies at the expense of Ventspils taxpayers.
Pietiek has recently published some of the most important fragments from charges presented to Aivars Lembergs. Although, the amount of money ‘earned’ from certain questionable activities is modest by standards of Lembergs family – slightly above EUR 600,000, the portal wrote.
For example, realizing his criminal intentions, on 12 March, 7 May, 20 August of 1999; 25 February, 5 May, 1 December of 2000; 24 August, 29 October of 2001; 21 January, 22 February, 10 May, 23 August, 7 November of 2002; 27 October 2003 and 20 February 2004, by taking part in four decision-making votes in Ventspils City Council (Juras Street 36, Ventspils) and fourteen decision-making votes in Ventspils Freeport Authority (Jana Street 19, Ventspils) in relation to Ventplac, Lembergs, as a state official in an important post, intentionally hid his involvement in a conflict of interests by not informing members of Ventspils City Council of this fact and by not delegating his functions as chairman of the city council to his deputy and instead choosing to influence the property interests of his son and daughter – Anrijs and Liga – in Ventplac. This is because at the time of making the decision, he [Lembergs] and his children indirectly owned two capital shares in Ventplac through Kaywood International Ltd. (reg.Nr.82158, address Tropic Isle Building P.O. box 438 Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands) in which they were the true beneficiaries and which owned no less than 15 shares in Ventplac worth LVL 12,000, which, according to the exchange rate at the time (8 April 2005), was equal to EUR 17,074.46.
In addition, Lembergs, his daughter and son, owned no less than nine shares in Seastar worth LVL 22,500 (32,014.62) through Euridice Corporation N.V. (reg.Nr.65246, address Zeelandia Office Park ING-gebouw, 1ste verdieping, Curacao Netherlands Antilles), in which they owned no less than 15,000 shares and were beneficiaries in no less than 50% of the company. Euridice Corporation N.V. also owned Beleggingsmaatschappij Geit B.V. (reg.Nr. 33254226, address Strawinskylaan 815 WTC Tower A8, 1077XX, Amsterdam), which was a participant and owned no less than 18 shares in Seastar. At the time of the decision being made, Seastar owned no less than 510 shares in Ferrotrans (reg.Nr. 000316638) worth LVL 229,500 (EUR 326,649.08), which owned ne less than 20 shares in Ventplac worth LVL 16,000 (EUR 22,765,95).
Lembergs, as chairman of Ventspils City Council and Ventspils Freeport Authority, took part in 14 decision-making processes in relation to Ventplac in both institutions. Doing so, Lembergs influenced his own, his son’s Ventplac in both institutions. Doing so, Lembergs influenced his own, his son’s and his daughter’s property interests in Ventplac because it secured the company favourable decisions in relation to environmental license approval, exemptions from state fees, real estate lease contracts, allocation of funding for the construction of woodchip storage and handling area, construction of large wood materials storage area and financing of cargo operations at dock Nr 5 worth LVL 362,800 (EUR 516,217.89) and repayment of base funds worth no less than LVL 85,305.82 (EUR 121,379.25), as the portal reported with reference to court materials.
Lembergs is accused of bribery is especially large amounts, money laundering, fraud, participation in property deals prohibited to him due to his post, abuse of official power and other crimes.
In addition to Lembergs, other suspects in this case include his son Anrijs and the aforementioned Sormulis. All three deny their guilt in the crimes they are accused of. The case is compiled in 200 volumes and two criminal processes that were submitted to court by the prosecutor’s office in the second half of 2008.
Aivars Lembergs Author: Edijs Pālens