IMF chief, Christine Lagarde, is investigated over compensation paid to tycoon
Thursday 24 January 2013
French anti-fraud police have raided the home of a former close associate of the International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde as part of an investigation into alleged abuse of public office and “embezzlement” when she was French Finance Minister in 2008.
Separately, it emerged that an anonymous letter had been sent from inside the French civil service exonerating Ms Lagarde and pointing the finger of blame at the former President Nicolas Sarkozy and a previous Finance Minister, Jean-Louis Borloo.
The investigation concerns the payment of €430m in state compensation to a disgraced French tycoon, Bernard Tapie, in 2008. Three French magistrates are investigating allegations that Ms Lagarde acted improperly when she created an independent panel to end a legal dispute over the seizure of Mr Tapie’s assets, including the Adidas sportswear company, in the 1990s.
Mr Tapie was jailed in 1997 after being found guilty of a number of offences including the fixing of a football match involving the club he owned at the time, Olympique Marseille. Once a left-wing activist and minister, Mr Tapie switched sides after he left prison to back Nicolas Sarkozy in the 2007 presidential election.
Magistrates are investigating allegations that Ms Lagarde , as Finance Minister, intervened improperly to ensure that Mr Tapie received significant compensation for what he claimed was the illegal seizure of Adidas by a state-controlled bank. In 2011, Ms Lagarde was appointed as head of the International Monetary Fund after rape allegations (since dropped) forced the resignation of another former French Finance Minister, Dominique Strauss-Kahn.
Anti-fraud detectives raided the home of Mr Tapie and that of Stéphane Richard, now head of France Telecom, formerly the head of Ms Lagarde’s private office at the finance ministry. Ms Lagarde is expected to be questioned by investigating magistrates in the near future. It is alleged that Mr Tapie was given a sweetheart deal in return for his high-profile support for Mr Sarkozy in the 2007 presidential election.
- 4 Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
- 5 New Tricks: Dennis Waterman to leave the show after a decade of crime-solving
Stamford Hill council removes 'unacceptable' posters telling women which side of the road to walk down
Kim Kardashian 'nude pictures' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence 'The Fappening' scandal
Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Ice Bucket Challenge: US firefighter Tony Grider dies after participating in charity craze near power lines
Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell called officer a 'little s**t', claim court documents 'exposing ex-Chief Whip's 'record of abusing police'
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
£70000 - £80000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Group Head of Marketing and Communic...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: Level 3 Nursery Nurse required for ...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: L3 Nursery Nurses urgently required...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: We have a number of schools based S...