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Sarkozy held for questioning in corruption probe

English.news.cn   2014-07-01 18:57:05

PARIS, July 1 (Xinhua) -- Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy was taking a grilling on Tuesday from investigators probing suspected influence-peddling, local media quoted judicial sources as saying.

On early Tuesday, Sarkozy was hearing at Nanterre, west of Paris over his use of influence to get information about a separate inquiry into charges that late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi funded his 2007 election campaign after judges have been authorized to tap his phone.

The conservative, the first top official to be detained in custody, rejected allegations that he got 50 million euros (68.46 million U.S. dollars) from Gaddafi to finance his campaign.

On Monday, two prosecutors Gilbert Azibert and Patrick Sassoust, and Sarkozy lawyer Thierry Herzog were also being quizzed by investigators.

The conservative politician could stay in custody up to 48 hours, which could dash his hopes of a come-back and defend credentials to win race to the Elysee in 2017.

Sarkozy, 59, has already been involved in a series of investigations over corruption including Bettencourt affair in which he was charged with taking financial advantages from the elderly French billionaire Liliane Bennecourt, the heiress of L'Oreal group.

Speaking to the news channel i Tele, the government spokesman Stephane Le Foll said "Sarkozy was subject to justice just like everyone else," adding "justice authorities are investigating and have to go all the way." (1 euro = 1.369 U.S. dollar)

Editor: Shen Qing
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