Bruni-Sarkozy charged with witness tampering in cash for husband's campaign case

France's former first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy has been charged for involvement in alleged efforts to pressure a witness who accused ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy of receiving illegal campaign financing from Libya.

Bruni-Sarkozy, 56, a former supermodel turned singer, was placed under judicial supervision which included a ban on contact with all those involved in the proceedings with the exception of her husband, said a source with knowledge of the investigation.

Preliminary charges against Bruni-Sarkozy include witness tampering. She is suspected of taking part in a plot to deceive magistrates who were investigating allegations that her husband had received illegal funds during his 2007 presidential election campaign.

Bruni-Sarkozy’s lawyer did not respond to requests on Wednesday for comment.

After she was questioned by police in May, her legal team said she had provided useful clarifications and explanations.

Sarkozy, 69, was charged in October 2023 with illegal witness tampering, as part of an inquiry into whether he took money from the late Libyan dictator Moamer Kadhafi to fund his 2007 election campaign.

Key player

The witness involved, Ziad Takieddine, is central to accusations that Sarkozy received millions in illegal payments from Gadhafi's regime.

The Franco-Lebanese businessman had claimed several times that he helped deliver up to five million euros cash from Kadhafi to Sarkozy and his chief of staff in 2006 and 2007.

But in 2020, Takieddine suddenly retracted his incriminating statement, raising suspicions that Sarkozy and close allies may have paid the witness to change his mind.

In a separate case in 2021, Sarkozy was found guilty of corruption and influence peddling.

Read more on RFI English

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