U.S. Treasury Sanctions Latvian ‘Oligarch’ Over Corruption

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. sanctioned a Latvian “oligarch” and businesses related to him over corruption -- the first person from the Baltic nation that the Treasury has added to its so-called Magnitsky list of crooked officials.

Lembergs, a former mayor of the port city of Ventspils, a key outlet for Russian crude exports in the 1990s, has been fighting graft charges in Latvian courts for about a decade.

The country -- a NATO and European Union member -- is trying to rebuild its reputation after a string of money-laundering scandals and the ongoing trial of its central bank governor for bribery.

“Lembergs has leveraged and corrupted law-enforcement officials to protect his interests and subvert politicians whom he otherwise was unable to control,” the Treasury said in a statement.

Lembergs has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing in his court proceedings.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

BQ Install

Bloomberg Quint

Add BloombergQuint App to Home screen.