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Top ECB banker detained in corruption investigation

Latvia’s independent anti-corruption agency detained the governor of the central bank Saturday after a raid on his home and office.

Ilmars Rimšēvičs, 52, is also a member of the European Central Bank’s rate-setting committee.

Latvia's Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau is holding him at a state police station.

Last week, the U.S. accused a leading Latvian bank of money laundering and obstruction.

Riga-based ABLV Bank has been dealing with North Korea, and with Russian mobsters, the Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network said.

ABLV, Latvia's third biggest bank, denied the allegations.

Latvia Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis said Monday Rimšēvičs should resign as governor of the central bank.

Rimšēvičs, an economist, joined the bank in 1992. He became governor in 2001.

He's been a member of the ECB's powerful rate-setting group since Latvia adopted the Euro in January 2014.


Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog.