France: Ex-Sarkozy Aide Charged With Bribery in Election Financing Probe

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Judges probing the financing of Nicolas Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign, allegedly with cash from Libyan dictator Moamer Kadhafi, charged the French ex-president’s former right-hand man Monday with taking bribes.

Claude Gueant, who was interior minister in Sarkozy’s government, was also charged with misuse of public funds and conspiracy in illegal campaign financing.

Gueant, who denies any wrongdoing, underwent a day of questioning last Tuesday, but “exercised his right to remain silent,” his lawyer Philippe Bouchez El Ghozi told AFP.

He was already facing tax fraud and forgery charges over a 500,000 euro ($585,000) transfer received from a Malaysian company in 2008, and the 2009 sale of a luxury villa in the south of France to a Libyan investment fund.

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