Prosecutor general unhappy with law enforcement quality in Latvia

The current situation with law enforcement institutions in Latvia is unsatisfactory, as the state is unable to ensure high-quality investigation of crimes, and there are very few serious criminal cases, said Latvian Prosecutor General Juris Stukāns during a meeting of Saeima’s Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention Committee.
On Wednesday, the 10th of January, the committee was presented with the planned reorganisation of the State Revenue Service (VID), which provides for the separation of law enforcement structures – the Tax and Customs Police Administration and the Internal Security Administration. Reorganisation was presented by Minister of Finance Arvils Ašeradens, who was also the one who proposed a long-term discussion with the Ministry of the Interior about the creation of an Economic Crimes Enforcement Bureau or a similar institution.
Stukāns expressed support in favour of reorganisation and what Ašeradens said, even though he believes it is also necessary to consider consolidation of other law enforcement institutions.
“I can say even more – the situation with law enforcement institutions in Latvia is unsatisfactory at the moment, the state cannot ensure high quality, reasonable and efficient investigations. We can see there are either very few or no serious cases at all,” said Stukāns.
The prosecutor general will submit a report to the Saeima about the results of the prosecution office’s successes in 2023. This report will reflect the situation with crime in the country. At the same time, it is already possible to say the state is able to investigate small thefts and drunk driving cases. Investigation of other cases, however, lacks appropriate resources.

The planned reorganisation of VID is one of the primary steps that should be taken,

and the keyword here is consolidation, efficiency and rationality, said Stukāns.
“I believe it is worth asking the question as to how much money the state pays for operational activities in general, and whether this work yields tangible results. Where are all the successfully uncovered, investigated crimes and sentenced criminals? There are as many law enforcement institutions as we have. The report from the State Audit mentions – there are seven separate institutions that investigate crimes of corruption. Seven! Find me another country that has as many,” stressed Stukāns.
As previously reported, it is planned to separate from VID the Tax and Customs Police and the Internal Security Administration, according to the report from the Ministry of Finance submitted to the government.
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