12 September, 2007
Every interested person has access to the “Public work statement of the Supreme Court for 2006” in the section Public Statements on the website of the Supreme Court. The statement has been published also in a printed form, and today about two hundred addressees both in Latvia and abroad received it. The public statement has been translated in English, as well.
The public statement prepared by the administration includes accounts of Andris Guļāns, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and managers of the structural units on fulfillment of the basic functions of the Supreme Court, and the problems. The information presented in almost thirty tables and diagrams is various. Pictures on everyday events and court sessions make the public statement more interesting. “The Trials of the Year” for 2006 which have attracted wide public interest have also been summarized.
The year of 2006 will remain in the history of the Supreme Court with considerable increase of the scope of work, reviewing record number of cases – 4311. Although the Supreme Court is independent in its activities and a politically neutral establishment, it is not completely isolated from the society and the events taking place in the country. As it is noted in the public statement, the work of the Supreme Court was also affected by the scandal of the parliamentary elections, change of three Ministers of Justice within a year, nomination of justices of the Constitutional Court, and arrest of the judges from the Vidzemes District Court. These events made to think more seriously about ethical problems in the professional activities of judges, but the essential increase of the scope of work – about making the work of the court more efficient. Improvement of professional skills of judges and international cooperation were the priorities supported by the Supreme Court in 2006.
The Supreme Court in an independent state institution, in the three-tiered court system of Latvia, it is the court of the third or the highest level reviewing the cases in the second instance (de novo review) and the third instance (cassation appeal). The Supreme Court is also the promoter of a unified court system and creator of case law data base in the country.