Lembergs faces confiscation of assets worth tens of millions of euros

  • 2021-02-22
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - If the court of appeals upholds the sentence delivered today by Riga Regional Court to suspended Ventspils mayor Aivars Lembergs (For Latvia and Ventspils), his properties, shares in various companies, automobiles, cash and other possessions worth tens of millions of euros will be confiscated in accordance with today's court ruling. 

Riga Regional Court on Monday ordered the confiscation of Lembergs' six properties - Ventas, Dzintarkalni and Celmalas in the municipality of Puze in Ventspils region, Veras and Drosta;inas in the municipality of Ugale in Ventspils region, as well as a building and land property at 31, Ojara Vaciesa Street in Riga. 

The transport vehicles to be seized from Lembergs in accordance with the court ruling include an Opel Tigra, a VW Caddy, a Sea Doo Utopia 205 motor boat, as well as two trailers. 

The court also decided to confiscate EUR 236,732 of Lembergs' money, currently held in the prosecution office's special deposit account, as well as seven companies' money deposit at Swiss bank accounts. The companies in question include Logistics Holdings Ltd., Vitale Consulting Inc., Marvinside United S.A., Cisternville Investmest Ltd., Kestrel Group Holdings Ltd., Misella United S.A. and Girasol Invest & Trade S.A..

The assets to be confiscated from Lembergs also include shares in the following companies BWA Holding Establishment (22 percent), Briskly Limited (50 percent), UBH United Baltic Holdings Limited (50 percent), Ost Services AG (53 percent), Lanthorn Trading Limited (100 percent), Hinch Invest & Finance S.A. (100 percent) and Tanar Vermogensberatungen S.A. (100 percent).

The court also decided to confiscate Lembergs' other claims, securities, privatization vouchers and various other assets, including privatization vouchers held by the to-be-liquidated Latvijas Krajbanka and shares in Ventspils Nafta and Latvijas Krajbanka. 

Prosecutor Juris Juriss told LETA that all Lembergs' assets will be confiscated in favor of the state but that part of these assets will be used to pay compensations to injured parties. 

As reported, Riga Regional Court today slapped a five-year jail term, confiscation of property and a EUR 20,000 fine on Ventspils Mayor Aivars Lembergs.

Lembergs will be arrested at the court room. The court, however, will take into account the time Lembergs has already spent in arrest - from March 14 until July 10, 2007, and in house arrest - from July 10, 2007, until February 22, 2008.

The court also ruled that Lembergs has to pay large sums to several victims in the case.

In relation to some charges Lembergs was acquitted.

Lembergs son Anrijs Lembers got a jail term of two years and one month with confiscation of property, while Lembergs' former business partner Ansis Sormulis was sentenced to two years in jail with confiscation of property. Anrijs Lembergs and Sormulis will not be arrested at the court room. They will have to go to jail when the sentence takes force.

Both parties will be able to appeal the decision at the Riga Regional Court. The court started hearing the case in 2009.

Prosecutors have asked to impose eight-year jail term with confiscation of property and a fine worth 150 minimum wages or EUR 64,500 on Lembergs.

Lembergs is charged with massive graft, money laundering, abuse of his official powers and other crimes.

The prosecution also demands a jail term of five years and six months with confiscation of property for Anrijs Lembergs, and a jail term of seven years with confiscation of property for Lembergs' former business partner Ansis Sormulis.

The three defendants plead not guilty.