Even after the announcement of a second guilty verdict, this time from a court of second instance, in the criminal case involving Ventspils politician Aivars Lembergs, the Union of Greens and Farmers (ZZS) will not change its opinion about its partner. Instead the party will wait for the final ruling, as LETA was told by ZZS Saeima faction leader Harijs Rokpelnis.
According to him, ZZS will not “heat up”, because it is still possible that a cassation complaint may be submitted to the Supreme Court over the verdict presented today by Riga Regional Court. This means the trial is not over.
This is why ZZS believes no major changes have occurred with Lembergs’ official status when compared with the ruling of the court of first instance. The trial isn’t over, says the faction leader. Once it is over, ZZS will look into the results and future cooperation perspectives with Lembergs, Rokpelnis said.
The politician referenced the trial involving Chairman of Ogre County Council Egils Helmanis, as part of which the man was found guilty by a court of first instance but was later acquitted in 2021.
This is why ZZS will not rush its decisions, because the verdict of the court of appeal is unlikely to remain the final one in this trial,
said the head of the faction.
When asked if voters could take such a reaction from ZZS negatively, Rokpelnis said that pragmatism and cool reason are the main characteristics of his party. “Hotheadedness is not something we’re known for,” he said.
According to him, ZZS has not changed when it comes to views on rule of law and presumption of innocence. This is why ZZS is committed to respecting judgements of the Constitutional Court in areas that have not been properly arranged by the state so far.
As previously reported, Riga Regional Court as a court of appeal declared ex-Chairman of Riga City Council Aivars Lembergs guilty of various crimes of corruption and sentenced him to prison. His sentence was cut by a year, however.
Lembergs was sentenced to four years in prison with confiscation of property. The time he had spent under arrest and under house arrest was deducted from his sentence.
More on this topic here: Regional court sentences infamous ex-Mayor of Ventspils to four years in prison