The Latvian government, right now in 2016, is trying to lock an anti-corruption protestor in prison. So much for any dreams that the government is getting less corrupt…
Back in January 2009, while the government was destroying the Latvian economy by fraudulently bailing out the pyramid fraud at Parex Bank, Latvian activists rightfully and correctly defended themselves by protesting at the parliament building and the Parex headquarters. The bailout fraud was a crime against Latvia on a scale not seen since World War II. The government doubled the national debt with the money mostly going to offshore account holders from Russia. Up to 20% of the Latvian population was forced to move to Western Europe to escape the economic devastation.
Parex was the main money-launderer for Vladimir Putin’s Tambovskaya Mafia. The government had full information that Parex was a pyramid fraud because a whistleblower gave details to the prosecutors in May 2005. The fraud was the largest in Latvian history, however the government didn’t investigate. Instead, the government made the fraud larger and gave awards, promotions, and cash to the criminals. The whistleblowing included information about an assassination, which the government didn’t investigate. And, the whistleblower received death threats for years, which the government also didn’t investigate.
However the government treated the January 2009 protest very differently. Suddenly the prosecutors had lots of time and energy to do investigations! They immediately opened criminal cases against 70 protestors. Some of those heroes are currently outside of Latvia and cannot return. This is ironic, since officially the government is asking Latvians outside of Latvia to please return home since the Crisis which the government says was caused by “Sweden” is supposedly finished.
For example, the government is forcing Ansis Ataols Berzins to stay in exile outside of Latvia by threatening him with 20 months in prison if he returns. He made an appeal for justice at a recent Latvian festival (see link below).
We hope the European Union and United States will wake up and realize that Latvia is a fake democracy controlled by a small circle of oligarchs who are robbing and terrorizing the Latvian people. The EU and US could help by issuing arrest warrants for the government officials who were responsible for the Parex fraud (Godmanis, Dombrovskis, Repse, Rimsevics, Karins, Maizitis, Sudraba, Rubess, Vilks, Lagzdins, etc.) and adding them to sanctions lists. Threatening an exiled European anti-corruption protestor with prison to protect corrupt Russian billionaires is horrible tyranny, unacceptable within the EU and NATO.