Three MP's loose immunity

  • 2008-12-09
  • TBT staff in cooperation with BNS

VILNIUS- The LithuanianSeimas ruled on Dec. 9 to remove the legal immunity of three Members ofParliament. Labor Party Chairman Viktor Uspaskich, his former deputy VytautasGapsys and Rokas Zilinskas of the National Resurrection Party have been named.

The Seimas decided to approve trial proceedings of all three MPs despite theparliamentary commissions initially proposed plan to remove legal immunity ofjust Viktor Uspaskich. A resolution can be passed with the vote of over half ofall MPs, or 71 out of 141.

Prosecutor General Algimantas Valantinas addressed the Seimas in Nov. askingit to remove the legal immunity of three MPs. The Seimas is the onlyinstitution capable of stripping a Member of Parliament of legal immunity.

Prosecutors have accused Labor Party Chairman Viktor Uspaskich, the party'sformer executive secretary Vytautas Gapsys, and two other individuals offraudulent bookkeeping, registering erroneous figures in Labor Party books,pasting them onto declarations and presenting them to authority institutions,false submissions regarding party-owned capital to state institutions amidreceiving state allocations, causing considerable damage to the state.

The Labor Party is suspected of concealing more than 24 million litas (7 mlneuro) in income and about 23 million litas in spending, as well as evasion ofapproximately 4 million litas in taxes.

Former journalist Zilinskas is charged with a violation of public order,insulting and resisting seven police officers. He is facing up to three yearsin prisons for the charges.