New prosecutor's office to investigate crimes by Latvian state officials

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Prosecutor General Juris Stukāns has established a new prosecutor's office targeting crimes committed by state officials, Latvian Television investigative broadcast De Facto reported January 17.

The State Audit office has conducted an audit in the prosecutor's office. It was found that better organized prosecutorial work would improve the quality of charges and strengthen the rule of law, and the prosecutor's office should cooperate more closely with the investigating authorities.

Prosecutor General Juris Stukāns agrees with the findings and has already began to take action. Several prosecutors' offices in Riga have been merged and a new prosecutor's office has been set up to investigate exclusively the crimes of officials. Stukāns is convinced that, after training, employees will be able to fight corruption more successfully than they have done before.

The new Prosecution Office of Criminal Offenses in State Institution Service (NNVIDIP) head Jānis Omuls said that the new office will the new prosecutor's office will monitor and prosecute cases investigated by the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB), the Internal Security Bureau and the Internal Security Board of the State Revenue Service (VID).

The new NNVIDIP has the status of regional or first-level prosecutor's office, which means that the remuneration of prosecutors is lower than that of the district-level prosecutor's office. Most likely, for this reason, Chief Prosecutor Omuls has so far failed to attract prosecutors to the new establishment.

Prosecutor General Stukāns, however, has no doubt that the new prosecutor's office will be successful: “It is necessary to change yesterday's situation so that today's situation is different. The names must therefore be replaced, people should be replaced, additional people should be involved, with a new view, a new approach and a desire to change. So there will be a targeted investment here.”


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