Latvian central bank governor Rimšēvičs out of custody, but still in his job

Latvia's central bank governor Ilmārs Rimšēvičs - for such he remains as far as anyone knows - walked out of a detention center in Rīga Monday night to be greeted by patiently waiting media.

Despite calls for him to stand down by he Prime Minister after 17 years in his job as a corruption scandal explodes around him, Rimšēvičs made no immediate announcement about his future and said he would make no statement until a press conference tomorrow.

He did however say he "categorically denied" all allegations against him.

Though he seemed willing to say a few words - and even apologized to reporters for their lengthy wait in sub-zero temperatures - he was soon hustled away by his lawyer to a waiting car.

 

According to LTV, his liberty is subject to payment of a 100,000 euro security bond paid earlier in the day but the source of which remains undisclosed.

In a separate development, Oliver Bramwell, Chairman of the Board of Norvik Bank, in an interview with the AP news agency, named Rimšēvičs as the senior financial figure who had tried to extort bribes from the bank.

However, a press conference earlier in the day held by the KNAB anti-corruption bureau and the state police stated explicitly that the investigation they are conducting involving Rimšēvičs and another individual believed to be businessman Māris Martinsons, does not involve Norvik bank.  

Nevertheless, the AP piece makes startling reading, saying from 2015 Rimšēvičs attempted to extort large sums using what is claimed to have been control over the financial regulator.

LTV confirmed Monday night that Rimšēvičs will make what is likely to be a make-or-break appearance - at least as far as his public image is concerned - on the One On One interview show Tuesday night.

 

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