The US Treasury has released a list of key people in the Putin Regime which has been dubbed the ‘Putin Mafia List’ by the Media. These are people who are likely to be sanctioned in the future, particularly if Putin continues military attacks and election interference against other countries.
Some people on the list are connected with Latvia. Not only connected, but apparently controlling the Latvian government.
Oligarchs Petr Aven, Oleg Boyko, Mikhail Fridman, Yuriy Shefler, and Viktor Vekselberg appear to have significant control over the Latvian government through local Oligarchs Valery Kargin and Viktor Krasovitsky. It is openly known that Aven and Fridman discussed purchasing Parex Bank from Kargin and Krasovitsky before half of the assets of Parex disappeared instead. The government says the Parex assets disappeared because of the USA and Sweden however there is no evidence supporting this story. Since Boyko and Shefler were big borrowers for Parex, it’s possible that much of the money went to them. Meanwhile Vekselberg also got involved with Parex regarding a property scam for the State Revenue Service.
Also Oligarchs Arkadiy Rotenberg and Boris Rotenberg appear to have significant control over the Latvian government through local Oligarch Yuri Savitsky. Savitsky is openly known to be former KGB. He is immensely wealthy because the Latvian government gave him a lot of state assets. His bank VEF and Skonto’s Multibanka (also KGB-linked) were sanctioned by the US Treasury in 2005. The Rotenbergs bought Multibanka and re-named it SMP Bank. Then SMP Bank was sanctioned by the US Treasury in 2015. Now the bank is renamed Meridian Trade Bank. It’s amazing how a bank can escape sanctions by renaming itself every few years. All of these Oligarchs are involved with the KGB/Gazprom ice hockey team called Dinamo.
So much for the myth still promoted in the Western media that the Latvian government is geopolitically allied with NATO and the EU. Actions speak louder than words and although the Latvian people mostly prefer NATO and the EU it is clear that the government is on Putin’s side.