Former bodyguard charged with bribery

  • 2004-08-19
  • By TBT staff
The Riga City District Court released Girts Pilans, a member of the State Revenue Service on Aug. 11, and Zigmars Rubenis, former chief bodyguard for Parliamentary Speaker Ingrida Udre, after both were charged with bribery and corruption.

Rubenis, who is part of the security services for both the president and Parliament, was initially detained by the anti-corruption bureau in connection with a $4,000 bribe allegedly given to facilitate a business deal.
Pilans has worked for the State Revenue Service since 1999, while Rubenis has been with the security detail for eight years.
Rubenis allegedly used his contacts to facilitate a customs transfer by contacting Pilans and delivering the money.
If convicted the two could face sentences up to eight years in prison.
At a press conference shortly after the arrest, Udre, who was recently appointed to the European Commission, read a statement saying she was upset by the news of Rubenis' detention.
The anti-corruption bureau was reportedly surprised by the decision to release Rubenis pending an investigation and said it planned to appeal the decision.
Rubenis has been placed under police surveillance by the court.
President Vaira Vike-Freiberga called the situation "serious" and that it "must be assessed."