Russia scholar Karin Dawisha recently published “Putin’s Kleptocracy.” It is an excellent book, detailing Vladimir Putin’s ascent from the KGB to the St Petersburg Mafia to the Russian Presidency. Dawisha links Putin with certain organized crime bosses in St Petersburg who are linked with Parex Bank. This might cause problems for Latvian officials (general prosecutor, central bank governor, and others) who are fighting to protect Parex because the FBI (as revealed yesterday by the Financial Times and Wall Street Journal) is probing Putin’s money laundering activities.
Now in November 2014, Parex Bank successor Citadele Bank is operating with mostly the same employees and its core business is still serving offshore shell-company accounts for Russians. Even though the Latvia/EBRD bailout is publicly known to have been fraudulent, the people who signed the deal are not being prosecuted. Former Latvian Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis is now Vice President of the European Commission responsible for the euro. Former EBRD President Thomas Mirow was not reinstated at the EBRD even though Putin recommended him. Instead, Mirow is now Chairman of HSH Nordbank.