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FRANCE: Nicola Sarkozy faces two years in prison

Nicolas Sarkozy @LaVoixDuNord

The former President of the Republic, his lawyer Thierry Herzog and the former magistrate Gilbert Azibert appear before the Paris Criminal Court for “corruption” and “influence peddling”. They face four years in prison, including two years against Mr. Sarkosy.

As part of the “wiretapping” case, the prosecutor of the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office requested, on Tuesday, December 8, 2020, four years in prison, two of which were against the former president of the French Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy. The same sentences were applied against lawyer Thierry Herzog and former magistrate Gilbert Azibert. The prosecutor’s office also required the same lawyer to be banned for five years. 

Nicolas Sarkozy, his lawyer Thierry Herzog and former magistrate Gilbert Azibert appear for “corruption” and “influence peddling”, offences punishable by 10 years in prison.Thierry Herzog and Gilbert Azibert are also being tried for “breach of professional secrecy”.

The charges against the former tenant of the Elysée Palace date back to 2014. He is suspected of having attempted to obtain, through his lawyer Thierry Herzog, secret information from the former high magistrate Gilbert Azibert, in a proceeding concerning the seizure of his diaries on the sidelines of the Bettencourt case, in exchange for a post in Monaco which the President would have proposed to him.

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The financial prosecutor Jean-Luc Blachon denounces a double violation: that of the rules of ethics of a lawyer and a magistrate, and that of a former president of the republic who did not measure the sense of his responsibilities.

The prosecutor talks about a “pact of corruption” even if Gilbert Azibert did not obtain the position hoped for in Monaco, and even if Nicolas Sarkozy finally gave up, the only clearly formulated promise is enough, recalls the prosecutor’s office, to characterize corruption and influence peddling.

The former president defends himself in these terms: “I have never committed any act of corruption.” Her lawyer, Me Jacqueline Lafont, fought hard against the prosecution and stated that she had “especially heard three weeks of hearings and a mute prosecutor’s office, a non-existent prosecutor’s office, a prosecutor’s office that never reacted, a prosecutor’s office that was put each day a little bit more in the face of the flaws, the non-existence, the vacuity of his accusation.”


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