Pabriks anticipates deterioration of Latvia-Denmark relations because of Misane's case

  • 2020-01-31
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Defense Minister Artis Pabriks (For Development/For) anticipates a deterioration of relations between Latvia and Denmark because of Latvian national Kristine Misane's detention in Denmark. 

"It seems that soon relationship between Denmark and Latvia will become very sensitive," the Latvian minister said on Twitter. 

"Our citizen, Kristine Misane is already 418 days in DK prison, risking to be sent to South Africa for crime which is not a real crime. Its shame for Danish justice and political system," Pabriks said. 

The Latvian defense minister went on to shame Danish authorities asking them rhetorically if they think that the Latvian prisoner is ok in a cell among 17 more prisoners in South Africa. "Would they treat Danish citizens like this as well?" Pabriks asked. 

As reported, a Danish court on Thursday, January 30, ruled to leave Latvian citizen Kristine Misane, who has been detained in Denmark, in custody, Misane's representatives informed LETA.

They said that in Thursday's hearing the judge had to decide whether to keep Misane in custody or release her after the South African authorities did not take her over within 30 days as required.

The representatives said that initially the judge had decided to release the Latvian but the prosecutor immediately protested the ruling, arguing that South Africa has guaranteed a place for Misane in a prison cell together with 18 other inmates where she will have 4.4 square meters of personal space. 

A statement to the press quotes Misane's sister Marite Bataka as suspecting Denmark and South Africa of having a "secret political agreement". Batraka believes that the suspected agreement might be related to South Africa's decision to extradite a Danish citizen Britta Nielsen wanted in Denmark for grave crimes. 

As reported, Misane has turned to the Latvian Prosecutor General's Office asking that she be questioned in a Danish prison where she is currently being held.

Misane hopes that, as a result, the Latvian prosecutor's office will possibly obtain additional evidence in charges brought against her.

The prosecutor's office previously explained that the authorities in the Republic of South Africa had charged Misane with offenses that did not carry significant penalties in Latvia, therefore there was no legal basis for issuing a European arrest warrant. As for another alleged offense by Misane, which in theory could meet the fraud and document forgery criteria, Latvia could not guarantee that charges would be brought against Misane in Latvia.

A European arrest warrant can only be issued if criminal proceedings have been initiated in Latvia, the person has at least been recognized as a suspect, and the judge overseeing the case has decided that the person must be detained.

As reported, Saeima last week decided to ask the Danish authorities not to extradite Misane to South Africa.

LETA also reported, Misane met a citizen of the South Africa in 2011 and they had a daughter four years later. However, conflicts began between the two parents, which were initially financially motivated. The man then unilaterally decided to end the relationship and began to abuse both Misane and the two minors in the family.

Fearing for the safety and lives of herself and her children, in Misane returned to Latvia in May 2018. In December 2018, Misane went on a business trip through Copenhagen to Mozambique, but was detained while crossing the border because she was wanted by Interpol. South Africa had told Interpol that Misane was wanted for kidnapping a minor. Now the women is facing a fifteen-year prison sentence in South Africa.