Biker banned from Latvia

Take note – story published 8 years and 1 month ago

A member of Russia's leading ultranationalist weekend warriors, the 'Night Wolves' biker gang, has been added to a blacklist of individuals not welcome in Latvia, Interior Minister Rihards Kozlovskis said Thursday.

Kozlovskis said Igor Latakos, described as "regional organizer" for the Night Wolves was on Latvia's blacklist.

However the ministry declined to confirm or deny whether or not Russian citizen Lakatos was currently in Latvia and in line to be deported or was simply barred from future entry. 

"The Ministry for the Interior confirms that Igor Lakatos is included in the list of those foreigners for whom entry into the Republic of Latvia is prohibited. The Minister of the Interior has made the decision based on information provided by security and intelligence services," the Ministry said in a statement.

Currentrly more detailed information is not provided.

The Night Wolves attract a lot of publicity in Russia, espousing pro-Kremlin, anti-Ukrainian sentiments.

Their leaders, most notably a hulking figure knows as "The Surgeon" (real name Alexander Zaldostanov) frequently appear on chat shows and the like.

Despite the homoerotic undertones of so many beefy men hanging out together on throbbing, powerful machines dressed in tight leather while repeatedly asserting their masculinity, members of the Night Wolves espouse a rabidly anti-gay rhetoric with Zaldostanov famously pronouncing "Death to faggots."

They leapt to prominence when Russian President Vladimir Putin once went on a ride out with them, though he was provided with a motorized tricycle for the occasion to mitigate against the possibility that he might fall off.

Brutal Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov is another member of the cosy club.

The Night Wolves' most notorious stunt involved trying to drive from Moscow to Berlin, a long-distance haul that ultimately descended into farce.

Latvia's business register shows that a "Night Wolves Motorcycle Club Latvia" was founded in 2002, with Lakatos linked to it from 2013.

In a remarkably broad description of its purpose, the club says its aims include the swapping of tehnical information about motorbikes, the "formation of public opinion and popularization of motor sports" and "encouraging youth to spend their time wisely."

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