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Latvia requests Czech Republic to extradite one of participants of riot in Riga on January 13, 2009
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    Latvia requests Czech Republic to extradite one of participants of riot in Riga on January 13, 2009

    RIGA, April 20 (LETA) - The Latvian Prosecutor General's Office has started the paperwork to get a notorious participant of the riot in Riga on January 13, 2009, extradited from the Czech Republic.

    The Prosecutor General's Office said that on April 5 it had sent to the competent Czech authority the European Arrest Warrant for Ansis Ataols Berzins, seeking his extradition to Latvia for serving his jail term.

    Berzins has been convicted for participation in the 2009 riot in Riga but has fled Latvia to avoid serving his sentence of one year and eight months.

    LNT commercial television reported earlier that Ansis Ataols Berzins, a son of well-known Latvian poet and translator Uldis Berzins, had been detained in the Czech Republic in early April this year.

    In February 2016 the Riga Regional Court rejected Berzins' appeal against the guilty verdict and he was supposed to go to jail.

    During an online news conference via Skype in July 2016, Berzins announced that he felt let down by the Latvian state. As a young boy, he had actively participated in the drive for Latvia's independence but now the Latvian authorities want to put him in jail, he complained. However, he did not deny that he had been throwing cobblestones at the Latvian parliament building during the riot. Berzins said he had left the country to avoid going to jail but would not say in which country he was staying currently.

    On January 13, 2009, a peaceful rally turned into a riot and over 50 rioters have been convicted, although most got off with community service and only nine were given real jail terms. The conditional sentence given to Berzins by the court became a real jail term after the man failed to register with the State Probation Service which was one of the conditions of his conditional sentence.

    • Published: 20.04.2017 12:33
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