Home » today » News » In the second digital television case, prosecutor Skelel demands three years in prison, confiscation of property and recovery of 1.2 million euros

In the second digital television case, prosecutor Skelel demands three years in prison, confiscation of property and recovery of 1.2 million euros

Following the examination of witnesses, a court debate began last week, in which prosecutor Zelčs was the first to speak.

The prosecutor has asked the court to find Šķēlis guilty of fraud and money laundering and to sentence him to three years in prison, a fine of 75,000 euros and confiscation of property without supervision. According to the prosecutor, a fine should be imposed for fraud, and imprisonment and confiscation of property for money laundering. LETA has already written that parts of Šķēle’s companies have previously been seized.

The prosecutor has also demanded the recovery of 1,266,355 euros from the former politician, which in the prosecutor’s opinion is the proceeds of crime.

Sleser has been asked to be found guilty of fraud and sentenced to € 65,000 without confiscation or probation supervision.

Former Chairman of the Board of the telecommunications company Tet (then Lattelecom) Juris Gulbis has been sentenced to a fine of 75,000 euros, former Secretary of State of the Ministry of Transport (MoU) Nils Freivalds to a fine of 60,000 euros, former Latvian National Radio and Television Center (LVRTC) a fine of 75,000 euros for the chairman, Lauris Drips. The prosecutor also considers that Gintaras Kavacis, a former member of the board of SIA Hannu Digital, should be fined 75,000 euros.

The prosecutor has asked Jānis Ligers, then commercial director of Tet, to pay a fine of 60,000 euros, Tomas Ābel, head of the Business Department, 50,000 euros, and Tomas Meisītis, head of the Business Support Department, a fine of 45,000 euros.

Gulbi, Freivalds, Dripi, Kavaci, Liger, Ābel and Meissīte have been prosecuted for the fraud, but the prosecutor has not called for their confiscation and probation supervision.

In determining the type of punishment provided for in the Criminal Law on fraud for all nine accused, it should be taken into account that they committed a particularly serious crime and that their intent and criminal offense were to involve SIA Hannu Digital in the digital terrestrial TV project and obtain funds from Lattelecom. SIA Hannu Digital ”and its intermediary creditor Šķēle, thus increasing the costs of this nationwide project and causing a large amount of property damage to Lattelecom, the prosecutor believes.

It should also be noted that the influence of the respective accused on the MoU, LVRTC, Lattelecom employees and administrative institutions was used in committing the crime, including the trust and deception of the representatives of Lattelecom’s administrative institutions. In addition, the trust of the highest executive power of the state – members of the government – was used in achieving the adoption of the regulations of the Cabinet of Ministers necessary for the implementation of the crime, Zelčs pointed out in court.

At the same time, taking into account the personalities of the accused and the fact that none of them have previously committed crimes, as well as the fact that the accused of fraud did not acquire Lattelecom’s property directly for their own benefit, but for a legal entity – SIA Hannu Digital, and that 12 years have passed since the commission of this crime, it is acknowledged that the purpose of the punishment prescribed by law can be achieved by imposing fines, the prosecutor has indicated.

Regarding the crime accused of Šķēle – money laundering, taking into account Šķēle’s personality and the fact that he has not committed crimes before, as well as 12 years have passed since the commission of this crime, Šķēle’s sentence is limited to confiscation of property, the prosecutor said.

The public prosecutor has also indicated in the debate that SIA Hannu Digital has a coercive measure to be imposed – the recovery of money in the amount of 4,000 minimum monthly salaries or two million euros.

Since, in the opinion of the prosecution, all the accused, except Skele, are not subject to an additional penalty – confiscation of property – and no application for compensation for damage has been filed in the criminal proceedings, the seizure of the seized property must be revoked, the prosecutor considers.

Judge Kaspars Vecozols has confirmed to Latvian Television that a verdict could be pronounced in this case at the end of January. Four more hearings are scheduled for the defendants ‘defense counsel, after which a few hearings will be required for the replies, the defendants’ last word and the verdict.

The next court hearing in this case is scheduled for January 4, 2021, when lawyers will give speeches, LETA clarified.

It has already been reported that in this case the charges were brought in connection with the tender organized by the MoU in 2008 for the provision of digital terrestrial TV broadcasting and on the basis of the agreements concluded between Tet, Hannu Digital and LVRTC.

According to the prosecutor’s office, the defendants’ actions were aimed at unlawfully and unjustifiably involving Hannu Digital in the project and in the contractual relationship, which resulted in the company obtaining Tet’s financial resources of several million euros, thus making the national project unjustifiably more expensive.

According to the indictment, the amount allegedly obtained is approximately three million euros.

The accused offenses took place in 2008 and 2009, when a tender for the introduction of digital television was organized in the MoU and subsequent agreements were concluded involving the Hannu Digital project.

Although Tet has not reported the victim in the criminal proceedings, the prosecutor has pointed out that this will not jeopardize the progress of the case.

The so-called first digital television case is currently pending in the Riga Regional Court. This case concerns an affair discovered in 2003.

Skele’s name has also been uttered in the context of this case, but no charges have been brought against him in this case.

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