Latvia's Revenue Service head suspended by Finance Minister

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Minister of Finance Jānis Reirs (New Unity) has issued an order regarding the initiation of disciplinary proceedings and the suspension of the Director General of the State Revenue Service, Ieva Jaunzeme, Finance Ministry said in a statement on September 15.

The Finance Ministry said that the order was issued both on the basis of the service review report and in response to the recent detentions of the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) in the VID Customs and Finance Police, as well as the detention of several employees by the VID Internal Security Board.

“What has happened is an unprecedented case. An organized criminal group consisting of high-level employees of the VID has been detained. The detainees [..] are not low-level inspectors or any individual customs officers, they are very high-level officials working directly under the managing director, who in turn reports directly to the Director-General.

The crimes for which these officials have been detained are also the most serious ones that an official can commit. In such a situation, it is inconceivable that the establishment could pretend that nothing has happened and continue to work peacefully further,” Reirs was quoted in the statement.

The actions by Jaunzeme classify as unjustified failure to perform duties, a specific order or task, or delayed, negligent or poor performance. This may have caused significant damage to the interests of the State, the Ministry statement indicates.

Deputy Director General Indra Kārkliņa will be appointed as the executor of the duties of the Director General of the VID.

Reirs has also asked to decide on the liability and dismissal of the director of the VID Tax and Customs Police Board, Kaspars Podiņš, for the period of inspection.


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