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Bank of Latvia head banned from performing functions at ECB Governing Council
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    Bank of Latvia head banned from performing functions at ECB Governing Council

    RIGA, March 8 (LETA) - Ilmars Rimsevics, the Bank of Latvia governor, who has been banned from his duties at the Latvian central bank pending the investigation into corruption suspicions, has also been banned from performing the functions related to his position at the Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB), the Bank of Latvia said.

    The Bank of Latvia spokesman, Janis Silakalns, said that the Latvian central bank had been notified by Rimsevics' lawyer that Rimsevics had been banned also from performing the functions related to his work at the ECB Governing Council.

    Silakalns stressed that the Bank of Latvia is not paying any salary to Rimsevics while the man is banned from working as the Bank of Latvia governor. Rimsevics also has no access to the Bank of Latvia information systems and documents and he cannot use the staff car.

    Rimsevics' lawyer Saulvedis Varpins said previously that, although Rimsevics is prohibited to carry out his official duties as the Bank of Latvia governor, Rimsevics' participation in the ECB council meetings would not breach that restriction. "If he does not vote on Latvia's issues, then he does not breach the restriction. Our opinion is that Rimsevics is working on the ECB as a highly professional person, not only as the Bank of Latvian governor. We believe that Latvia may not restrict duties of an ECB council member," said Varpins.

    As reported, the Latvian Corruption Prevention Bureau has started a criminal proceeding against Bank of Latvia Governor Ilmars Rimsevics on suspicions of soliciting and receiving a bribe of at least EUR 100,000. The corruption watchdog has imposed several restrictions on Rimsevics, who has been released against the bail of EUR 100,000 pending the investigation. For the duration of the investigation, Rimsevics has been banned from performing his responsibilities as the head of the Latvian central bank, from leaving Latvia and from contacts with certain individuals.

    Rimsevics insists he is innocent and therefore will not step down as the head of the Latvian central bank. He said that the accusations against him was a retaliatory action from ABLV Bank and other banks serving non-residents.

    • Published: 08.03.2018 14:22
    • LETA
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