- Associated Press - Sunday, December 16, 2012

PARIS (AP) - A French newspaper is quoting actor Gerard Depardieu as saying he is turning in his passport after insults from France’s Socialist prime minister for taking up residence in tax-friendly Belgium.

The Sunday weekly Le Journal du Dimanche published an open letter attributed to Depardieu in which the actor chides Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault for calling him “pathetic” and “unpatriotic” last week for moving to Belgium to escape French taxes.

“I leave after paying 85 percent of my revenue in 2012,” the letter says. “I turn into you my passport and (my) social security card which I have never used.”

Depardieu, who turns 64 this month, has made more than 100 films.


The Belgian village of Nechin _ Depardieu’s new home _ has drawn other high-earning French residents.