Latvian State Police Chief replaced

  • 2011-07-31
  • TBT Staff

Velss will lose his position as state police chief and instead head the police college. (photo: valsts policija)

RIGA -- Justice Minister and acting Interior Minister Aigars Stokenbergs has "rotated out" State Police Chief Artis Velss and nominated a replacement.

Velss has been appointed director of the State Police College, an apparent demotion. Stokenbergs nominated State Police Riga Region Administrator Ints Kuzis to replace the outgoing police chief.

Stokenbergs told national newswire service LETA that the demotion was a result of Velss failing to offer proposals for changes to police salaries, as he had been ordered to do by July 15.

In his first comments to the press after being nominated for the country's top position for police, Kuzis said that high levels of theft in Riga are an indication of the continuing effects of the economic crisis.

"Everything is being stolen that can be stolen,"Kuzis said.

The government is due to vote on Kuzis' candidacy for the post on Aug. 2.