Ten persons involved in criminal case on procurements of Central Election Commission

  • 2022-11-29
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Ten persons, including six officials, are involved in the criminal proceeding investigated by the Corruption Prevention Bureau (KNAB) on procurement organized by the Central Election Commission (CVK).

KNAB is investigating a procurement organized by CVK in 2021. LETA learned that KNAB launched the criminal proceeding on November 7 on suspicion of large-scale graft, abuse of authority that has caused grave consequences, abetting the crime and forgery of documents.

On November 22, KNAB conducted procedural activities. Ten persons involved in the criminal case, including CVK chairwoman and five other officials, have been given the status for the right for defense. Two persons, including the CVK chairwoman and a business representative, have been imposed restrictive measures that do not entail deprivation of liberty.

KNAB on November 25 has asked the parliament to suspend CVK chairwoman from her position.

KNAB in cooperation with the prosecution is carrying out active investigation, therefore no more details can be revealed on the case and the involved persons.

KNAB noted that during pre-trial investigation no facts have been proved that would make doubt legitimacy of the 14th Saeima elections.

As reported, KNAB detained the Central Election Commission's Chairwoman Kristine Berzina last week, but was released soon after.

Last Tuesday, the Corruption Prevention Bureau's officers also visited IT company SOAAR as part of the criminal case, a company that had won several major contracts with the Central Election Commission and other state institutions in recent years.

According to Firmas.lv, SOAAR was registered in Jekabpils Region and belongs to Leonards Survilo and Renars Kadzulis. In 2020, the company posted EUR 1,118,557 in turnover and EUR 675,055 in profit.

Information available on the website of the Procurement Monitoring Bureau reveals that at the beginning of this year SOAAR signed a EUR 963,515 contract with the Central Election Commission for the development of a Saeima election management system's module.

In August 2021, SOAAR signed a EUR 91,191 contract with the Central Election Commission, last June - a contract worth EUR 275,370, and another EUR 154,802 contract in April 2021.

SOAAR also signed several major contracts with the Central Election Commission and the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs in 2020, 2019 and 2018.

The Central Election Commission is one of the smallest state institutions that has never had its own IT department. For this reason, the commission leased the election management system developed by SOAAR, and in 2020, wishing not to be dependent on a single provider of services and the rising costs of the services it provided, decided to gradually purchase different modules developed by SOAAR.