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Latvian State Audit Office: Large part of technical equipment purchased for police is not used in practice

BC, Riga, 19.05.2020.Print version
The State Police no longer want to use handheld speed cameras, because increasingly more cases in which there is no photo or video of a violation are contested in court, the State Police told the State Audit Office, citing LETA.

The Audit Office previously concluded that large part of technical equipment purchased by the Interior Ministry for improving road safety was sitting on shelves in warehouses and, most probably, would never be used in practice.


For instance, the Audit Office has established that five 3D laser scanners, bought for EUR 513,175 for improving the quality of traffic accident documentation, are rarely used by the State Police.


The Audit Office has also found that out of 142 bodycams, only eighteen were used by the police. The State Police replied, however, that this information was no longer relevant and that all the bodycams had been handed over to police units as of March 10.


The Audit Office has also concluded that forty handheld speed cameras purchased for EUR 387,560 had never been used by the police in practice, only in test mode. The State Police explained that this was because increasingly more cases in which there was no photo or video of the violation in question were contested in court. That is why the State Police have decided in principle to only purchase speed cameras that take photographs or record videos.


The Interior Ministry informed the Audit Office that a special commission was set up at the end of 2019 to assess the conditions under which various technical equipment had been purchased for the needs of the State Police since 2014, which eventually was not put to use.


The commission concluded that there were no reasons to question the usefulness of the purchases of equipment, as they were aimed at improving road safety and in most cases the equipment was purchased as a result of measures approved by the relevant authorities.


The commission nevertheless recommended the Interior Ministry to improve the procedure by which institutions submit requests regarding funds necessary for improving road safety and report on utilization of the funds






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