Jēkabs Straume named new anti-corruption chief

The new head of Latvia's dedicated anti-corruption force, the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) has been named.

The announcement came in a statement from central government after a meeting of the selection panel, comprised of various political, legal and law enforcement figures approved the appointment.

Two candidates were left in the race.

The new figure in one of Latvia's hottest hot-seats will be Jēkabs Straume, who is currently head of administration at the Military Intelligence and Security Service (MIDD).

However, before taking up his new job, Straume's appointment must first be approved by Saeima.

According to information released by the cabinet office, Straume has more than 16 years of experience at MIDD and previously worked in the State Police's Organized Crime and Combating Bureau. 

He is a graduate of the Latvian Police Academy, obtaining a master's degree and professional qualification as a lawyer.

His first task will undoubtedly be to put an end to the internecine warfare that has hampered KNAB's work for a decade and, even more importantly, to bring some high-profile corruption cases to a successful conclusion in order to restore public confidence in the bureau's ability to convict corrupt officials and businessmen. 

Straume will replace Jaroslavs Strelcenoks as head of KNAB.



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