Prose­cu­tor: se­cu­rity mea­sures against Rimšēvičs do not breach EU ju­ris­dic­tion

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Latvia’s law en­force­ment in­sti­tu­tions did not breach EU ju­ris­dic­tion by ap­ply­ing se­cu­rity mea­sures against the gov­er­nor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs, says prose­cu­tor gen­eral Ēriks Kal­n­meiers.

In an in­ter­view to 900 sec­onds pro­gramme of LNT, the prose­cu­tor men­tioned that Latvia’s ju­ris­dic­tion is sov­er­eign and there can­not be re­stric­tions on the fight against cor­rup­tion. There can­not be re­stric­tions on mea­sures ap­plied to high-rank­ing state of­fi­cials if there are jus­ti­fied rea­sons to sus­pect them of cor­rup­tion.

He al­lowed that there may have been mis­trans­la­tion of used ter­mi­nol­ogy. Ru­mours have also been voiced that the gov­er­nor of the Bank of Latvia was dis­missed from his post. Kal­n­meiers said that se­cu­rity mea­sures have been ap­plied to Rimšēvičs, in­clud­ing a pro­hi­bi­tion to per­form his du­ties. Se­cu­rity mea­sures have been im­posed for the du­ra­tion of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion. Rimšēvičs re­mains in his post.

The prose­cu­tor gen­eral also men­tioned that the in­ves­ti­ga­tion of Rimšēvičs’ case is pro­gress­ing in ac­cor­dance with the plan. In­ves­tiga­tive and pro­ce­dural ac­tiv­i­ties are be­ing per­formed. Prepa­ra­tion of a re­port for the Eu­ro­pean Court of Jus­tice also con­tin­ues. On Fri­day, 6 April, Eu­ro­pean Cen­tral Bank con­firmed send­ing a re­quest to the Eu­ro­pean Court of Jus­tice to as­sess mea­sures used by Lat­vian au­thor­i­ties against the gov­er­nor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs, who is sus­pected of bribery.

ECB has asked the court to ‘de­cide if Lat­vian au­thor­i­ties have vi­o­lated Eu­ro­pean leg­is­la­tion’ by ap­ply­ing re­stric­tions for Rimšēvičs to take post as gov­er­nor of the Bank of Latvia and at­tend meet­ings or­ga­nized by Eu­ro­pean Cen­tral Bank.

ECB Pres­i­dent Mario Draghi men­tioned dur­ing a press-con­fer­ence in March that the bank’s coun­cil does not have enough in­for­ma­tion in re­la­tion to this par­tic­u­lar case. He added that the court would be asked to pro­vide its con­clu­sion on this mat­ter. Rimšēvičs’ lawyers, mean­while, have turned to Eu­ro­pean Court of Jus­tice to chal­lenge the afore­men­tioned re­stric­tions. Lawyer Saul­vedis Vār­piņš had pre­vi­ously said that a case has been launched against the Lat­vian state.

Zane Bitere/LETA

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