French prosecutors seek to have Le Pen stripped of immunity


Officials want the European Parliament to strip National Front leader of MEP's immunity with a view to pursuing her over a remark about Muslims.

Reading articles is for subscribers only. Subscribe now.

Prosecutors in the French city of Lyon have requested that the European Parliament strip National Front leader Marine Le Pen of her immunity with a view to pursuing her over a remark about Muslims, according to French justice sources, reports Europe Online.

Justice ministry spokesman Olivier Pedro-Jose confirmed to dpa that the ministry had forwarded a request for the lifting of Le Pen‘s immunity to the parliament‘s president Martin Schulz on November 26.

Pedro-Jose said the request was formulated by the prosecutor‘s office in Lyon and referred further questions to the office. The prosecutors were not immediately available for comment.

A spokesman for the Strasbourg-based parliament confirmed to dpa that Schulz had received the request and said it had been forwarded to the parliament‘s legal committee to be examined.

Le Pen has been a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) since 2004.

Lifting the legal immunity of an MEP, so that he or she can be brought to trial, requires a vote in parliament.

In 1998, the parliament voted to revoke the immunity of Le Pen‘s father, National Front founder Jean-Marie Le Pen, over his declaration that the Holocaust was a "detail" of history. A German court later convicted him of minimizing the Holocaust.