Tax-evading former French budget minister's appeal trial wraps up


At the end of two weeks of hearings, a Paris court on Thursday deferred until May its verdict on the appeal by disgraced former French budget minister Jérôme Cahuzac against a three-year prison sentence handed to him in 2016 for tax fraud and money laundering. Cahuzac, 65, who Mediapart revealed in 2012 held a secret tax-haven bank account while leading a crackdown on tax fraud, did not contest his conviction, but sought a reduced sentence which would allow him to escape prison. While his lawyers argued that Cahuzac was a “broken” and “finished” man who risked taking his own life if sent behind bars, the prosecution has reiterated its demand for a three-year sentence. Mediapart legal affairs correspondent Michel Deléan was in court to follow the proceedings.   

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Former socialist budget minister Jérôme Cahuzac, who was sentenced in December 2016 to three years in prison for tax fraud and money laundering the proceeds of tax fraud, brought his appeal against the conviction, which was heard over five days of hearings beginning February 12th, in an attempt to avoid serving time in jail, which he would automatically be spared in the case of a reduction of the sentence to two years or less.