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Ventbunkers new management board to probe Berkis' activities

Alla Petrova, BC, Riga, 10.01.2013.Print version
This is the end of the unlawful activities of Olafs Berkis and his associates Igors Skoks and Genadijs Sevcovs, who seized AS Ventbunkers back in December 2011 with the help of fraudulent methods. The majority shareholders of the company have now elected a new Supervisory Board and Management Board that will assess the extent of damage and losses Berkis and his team have caused AS Ventbunkers, informed BC Aivars Gobins from Ventbunkers media service.

On Wednesday, January 9, the Enterprise Register (ER) registered the new AS Ventbunkers Management Board, with Eva Cinina as the Chairman, but Ugis Janaitis, Andrejs Pinkovs and Sergejs Levcenko as board members.


Thus, Dzintars Kass is no longer the Chairman of AS Ventbunkers. The fact that the Management Board has been registered in the ER secures the legal right of AS Ventbunkers majority shareholders, informs A.Gobins.


The new AS Ventbunkers Management Board will ensure transparent and accountable management, with particular emphasis on the protection of the potential state interest. The state interest arises out of a criminal case, in which grave charges have been brought against the notorious politician, and Ventspils Mayor, Aivars Lembergs.


Also, the Management Board will immediately start assessing last year's operations of the company to see whether or not the Berkis team did any serious damage to   AS Ventbunkers. It will also find out whether Berkis and his associates signed contracts, diverting part of the revenues to their offshore accounts as it was in the past.


It should be added that Berkis is associated with the foundation – For the Development of Latvia.


On January 4, the Enterprise Register accepted changes to the AS Ventbunkers Supervisory Council, stripping Berkis of his post of Chairman. Franz Harrand, Aivis Landmanis, Janis Gobins, Gatis Klimans, Aleksejs Ovods and Igors Lasko were confirmed as members of the new Supervisory Council, reports Ventbunkers media service.


Swiss attorney Rudolf Meroni, who controls AS Ventbunkers majority share, praises the change, stressing that it is based on the law. He reiterates that the company will be run taking into account the possible State’s interest.


“We faced a reality of totally unreasonable provisional measures implemented against us which cannot be explained other than that they were achieved by methods of doubtful legality. When a judge makes totally impossible and absurd rulings always in the favor of one party, one gets reasonable doubts about the legal system. I still hope that Latvia will return to the rule of Law as it is understood and practiced in Western European countries,” said Dr. Meroni.

Meroni also adds that this spring he will keep giving evidence in criminal proceedings against Ventspils Mayor Aivars Lembergs (at the Riga Regional Court).


As reported earlier, late last year Riga District Court stripped Berkis and his associates, including Dzintars Kass, of the right to act as AS Ventbunkers shareholders.


So, they and other minority shareholders have lost any legal right to control the company.


Court ruling issued on December 19, 2012, bans Berkis and his team from making changes in AS Ventbunkers Supervisory Board, statutes and any decisions related to the activities of AS Ventbunkers. The ruling cannot be appealed.


The only legitimate AS Ventbunkers shareholders are companies registered in the Netherlands – Yelverton Investment B.V., Yelverton Investments B.V., SIA IAG, Austrian company IAG Industrieanlagen GmbH, SIA Kement, SIA Topmar Baltic Investments, a/s Optima management, a/s Investment Activity, as well as Aivars Lembregs, Anrijs Lembergs and Liga Lemberga.


As reported earlier, the Prosecutor General’s Office and Riga Regional Court have appointed Rudolf Meroni as the custodian of the state assets seized within the framework of criminal proceedings against Aivars Lembergs.


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