Few candidates for Supreme Court Chief and General Prosecutor spots

Take note – story published 9 years and 2 months ago

This week candidates were named for upcoming term changes at the top seats in the state judicial branch – the Supreme Court and General Prosecutor’s Office, but few new faces appeared to challenge incumbents or former holders.

Current Supreme Court chair Ivars Bičkovičs and its former top judge Andris Guļāns are both vying for the position and will present their visions for leading the judicial branch to the Judicial Affairs Council and Supreme Court plenum, when one of them will be nominated for approval by Saeima.

So far only the Greens/Farmers Union party has come out in favor of the incumbent, while other political factions in Saeima will wait for the discussion until after the judicial community has vetted Bičkovičs’ and Guļāns’ candidacies.

Former Supreme Court chair and current Saeima deputy Gunārs Kūtris (From the Heart for Latvia) said the legislators should wait until the plenum has announced its results, as it’s a hard choice between two strong candidates well-known to the profession.

The situation at the General Prosecutor’s Office seems similarly due for small changes at best, as parliamentary politicians have mostly come out in favor of incumbent Ēriks Kalnmeiers continuing at the job.

However the nomination of the General Prosecutor must come after the Supreme Court Chairman’s recommendation, coordinated with the Judicial Affairs Council and only then goes to Saeima for parliamentary appointment.

But a new face did appear in the running Friday for the position as the nation’s top prosecutor when Jānis Ilsteris, the criminal prosecutor who has been in charge of the long-running (if not possibly never-ending) case against Ventspils mayor Aivars Lembergs announced his candidacy as head of Latvia’s Association of Prosecutors.

Supreme Court chief judge Bičkovičs said he would wait until all candidacies had been submitted by the deadline of April 11 and consider recommendations from other judicial branch institutions besides the Council of the General Prosecution, which has named Kalnmeiers as desirable to remain at the post.

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