In the wake of the release of a Parliamentary Commission’s preliminary findings concerning their investigation of the government’s takeover of Snoras bank, Russian businessman Vladimir Antonov, the bank’s former majority shareholder, commented in an interview to TV3 News delfi.lt, reported on 24 May.
The Commission’s preliminary statement, that “the actions taken by the Bank of Lithuania were rushed and did not follow a thorough analysis,” appears to support Antonov’s defense. But Antonov doesn’t see it that way. He stated, “It will not change the situation in court. We provided plenty of experts’ opinions in order to show that the whole process was politicized,” he said.
Antonov further added, “A bank is a living organism. It is not just a repository for money. It has assets, liabilities, and credits, like a body has organs. By its actions, the government effectively ripped the heart out of the bank.
Imagine a man lying in bed. When his heart stops and he dies, there are those who scavenge the liver and lungs. I see what happened here as the same thing. The bank was a living organism and it was just shut down,” he said.
As to the allegations of wrongdoing, Antonov stated vehemently, “The accusations are absurd. I dedicated more time to this company than to my family, and I regret it turned out this way.”
He also added that he is altogether surprised that Parliament members were pressured not to create such commission.