RIGA - After the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Department of The Treasury has imposed sanctions on Ventspils Mayor Aivars Lembergs, he and his family members are banned from entry in the US, according to a statement published on the internet website of the US Department of State.
The statement says that the US Secretary of State has credible information that officials of foreign governments have been involved in significant corruption, those individuals and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States.
Thus, the Secretary of State designates Latvian official Aivars Lembergs due to his involvement in significant corruption. In addition to the designated official, the Secretary of State is designating Aivars Lembergs’s wife, Kristine Lemberga, and children Anrijs Lembergs and Liga Lemberga.
The statement also says that the Department of State welcomes the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control’s (OFAC) actions to sanction these same corrupt actors. This whole-of-government approach sends a strong signal that the United States is committed to fighting systemic corruption and supporting the rule of law in Latvia.
As reported, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Department of The Treasury on Monday imposed sanctions on a number of people and legal entities in Europe, Asia and Latin America, including on Latvia's Ventspils mayor Aivars Lembergs, based on the so-called Magnitsky act.
OFAC has listed four organizations that belong to or are controlled by Lembergs - Vetspils Freeport Administration, Ventspils Development Agency, Business Development Agency, and the Latvian Transport Business Association.
In connection with these designations, OFAC simultaneously issued Global Magnitsky General License No. 1, which authorizes certain transactions and activities that are ordinarily incident and necessary to the wind down of transactions involving Ventspils Freeport Administration, Ventspils Development Agency, Business Development Agency, or the Latvian Transport Business Association, or any entity in which one or more of the designated entities owns, directly or indirectly, a 50 percent or greater interest, for a 30-day period.
Meanwhile, Lembergs is stepping down from the Ventspils port's board in order not to interfere with work of the Ventspils Freeport Authority or impair the port's competitiveness in any way, he explained.