In an unusual move February 3, Latvia’s financial regulator, the Financial and Capital Markets Commission (FCMC in English, FKTK in Latvian) said it was “recalling” a media press release it originally issued ten months earlier.
An anouncement on its website said: “FCMC revokes from the day of its issuance the order of the previous FCMC’s Chairman P. Putniņš of 29th April 2019 on suspension of Compliance Control Department Director Maija Treija, recognizing this order as non-substantiated and illegal.”
It then embarked on an astonishing apology, saying:
“Therefore, FCMC recalls its press release of 29 th April 2019 titled “FCMC suspends Compliance Control Department Director” and expresses its regret for defamation of and possible harm to [the] reputation of Maija Treija caused by the said order. FCMC acknowledges that the work of Maija Treija at the FCMC has always contributed to strengthening of the Latvian system of prevention of money laundering and terrorism and proliferation financing, as well as to raising of the international reputation of the financial sector of Latvia.”
The extraordinary admission leaves a serious question mark – putting it mildly – over the conduct of former FKTK chairman Pēters Putniņš (pictured above), who quit his job with a sizeable payoff in July last year as part of an overhaul of the regulator that was itself part of a wider ongoing overhaul of the entire Latvian financial sector.
LTV’s De Facto investigative show reported on the matter at the time and it was widely rumored that Treija and Putniņš did not see eye to eye on many subjects.