Sports Libyan funding: the court of appeal validates the investigation, the appeals of the Sarkozy camp rejected

16:10  24 september  2020
16:10  24 september  2020 Source:   lexpress.fr

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The Paris court of appeal confirmed this Thursday the validity of the investigation, contested by the camp of the former president.

Nicolas Sarkozy en juin 2019 à Paris © afp.com/Thomas SAMSON Nicolas Sarkozy in June 2019 in Paris

The investigations are valid. So decided the Paris Court of Appeal, which on Thursday rejected most of the appeals filed by the camp of Nicolas Sarkozy who challenged the investigation into suspicions of Libyan financing of his 2007 presidential campaign , a we learned from sources close to the case.

READ ALSO >> Suspicions of Libyan financing: a sprawling and extraordinary affair

Seized by the former head of state and several of his relatives implicated in the investigation, the investigating chamber has thus validated the investigations launched eight years ago in this case with multiple ramifications. The court only partially annulled one of the grounds for indicting Nicolas Sarkozy for violation of the electoral code. The defense can still appeal in cassation.

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The defense denounces a "judicial fiasco"

"It is clear that judicial corporatism exists because in a case neither done nor to be done which is a scandal (...) the investigating chamber has just covered the nullities of procedures which show that there is no longer a code of criminal procedure in France ", reacted Me Francis Szpiner, one of the lawyers of the businessman Alexandre Djouhri, indicted since January in this investigation.

"To see that all the means are rejected is still very worrying, which means that the lawyers are always wrong and the general prosecutor's office always right", added Me Jean-Marc Delas, another of his lawyers. "It is astounding in a case of this nature which from the start has been a legal fiasco built on sand, the fantasy is still present today", he added.

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READ ALSO >> Suspicions of Libyan funding: the flaws of the Sarko-show

Me Vincent Brengarth, lawyer for the NGO Sherpa, whose civil party constitution was contested by the Sarkozy camp, for his part expressed "his satisfaction ". "I think the judges were able to withstand pressures of all kinds," he told AFP.

Suspicious movements of funds but no material trace

The investigation was opened after the publication by Mediapart in 2012, between the two rounds of the presidential election, of a document supposed to prove that the victorious campaign of Nicolas Sarkozy had was funded by the regime of Muammar Gaddafi.

Testimonies of Libyan dignitaries, notes from the Tripoli secret services, accusations of an intermediary ... In seven years of work, the magistrates have gathered a sum of disturbing clues which gave substance to this thesis. However, no material evidence has been found, even though suspicious movements of funds have led to nine indictments to date.

In a vast procedural offensive, the former head of state and his former ministers Claude Guéant, Eric Woerth and Brice Hortefeux - all indicted except the latter - had raised a whole series of nullities against these investigations.

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