Earlier, the Riga Regional Court ruled in favor of an application to swap the diminutive con's five-stretch in the can for a security deposit.
Lembergs will also be barred from taking up the position of mayor of Ventspils while he's out of the cooler and working on an appeal against his five year sentence for massive graft, money laundering and abuse of office.
After a cool 12 years of litigation, the court of first instance delivered an abbreviated judgment on 22 February 2021 sentenced Lemberg to five years living at the taxpayer's expense, fined him 20,000 euros and confiscated his property.
As previously reported, courts started hearing the Lembergs case back in 2009 and its on-again, off-again character over the next decade became increasingly absurd. Despite the fact that he was being tried on serious fraud and corruption charges, Lembergs continued to play a very active role in politics, via his patronage of the Greens and Farmers Union political force. On a weekly basis he would also opine on matters of world and domestic politics via the Ventspils municipal website, frequently referring to himself in the third person.
The imposition of U.S. sanctions in 2019 courtesy of the G-men at the State Treasury saw his reputation as an untouchable shattered, though the convicted criminal continues to garner surprising support among sections of society even today.