Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy held by police in corruption probe

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Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been taken into police custody for questioning as authorities investigate corruption allegations against him.

Mr. Sarkozy is being questioned about whether he abused his power and engaged in a quid pro quo relationship with a judge, BBCreported Tuesday.

Specifically, investigators are trying to determine whether Mr. Sarkozy appointed Gilbert Azibert, a judge in Monaco, to a top position in exchange for information regarding the campaign finance investigation against him.

The Guardian, a British newspaper, said Mr. Sarkozy was already being investigated at the time of the alleged crimes, including illegal campaign donations from former Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

Mr. Sarkozy, who served as the French president from 2007 to 2012, is being held at Nanterre, near Paris, according to the BBC.

This is the first time a French former head of state has been held in police custody. His predecessor, Jacques Chirac, was given a suspended prison sentence in 2011 for embezzlement and breach of trust while he was mayor of Paris but was never detained for questioning.

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About the Author
Kellan Howell

Kellan Howell

Kellan Howell, an investigative reporter for The Washington Times, covers campaign finance and government accountability. Originally from Williamsburg, Va., Kellan graduated from James Madison University where she received bachelor’s degrees in media arts and design and international affairs with a concentration in western European politics.

During her time at JMU, she interned for British technology and business news website “ITPro” ...

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