al-Baghdadi al-Mahmoudi

Gaddafi spy chief tells French judges he oversaw 7m-euro payment for Sarkozy election campaign

International — Investigation

As part of their investigation into the suspected funding by the Gaddafi regime in Libya of Nicolas Sarkozy’s 2007 presidential election campaign, two French judges travelled to Tripoli earlier this month when they questioned, for the first time face-to-face, Gaddafi’s former spy chief, and brother-in-law, Mohamed Abdulla Senussi. Mediapart has gained access to extracts from the statements provided by Senussi, who detailed how he oversaw the payment of 7 million euros for Sarkozy’s campaign, as ordered by Gaddafi. He also confirmed that, as part of the deal, the former French president’s personal lawyer and friend Thierry Herzog was involved in moves to overturn an international arrest warrant issued against Senussi after his conviction in absentia by a Paris court for his part in the blowing up of a French airliner in 1989.

Journalist 'witnessed deal' over Libyan funding of Sarkozy campaign


A Tunisian journalist who became a prominent figure in Muammar Gaddafi's regime has revealed that he was present during the negotiations over Libyan funding of Nicolas Sarkozy's 2007 presidential campaign. Tahaer Dahec says that the sum agreed was 57 million euros, part of which went to a middle man. The revelation comes after a French TV station broadcast an interview with the late Libyan dictator in which Gaddafi himself spoke about how he funded the campaign. As Karl Laske reports, it is yet more powerful evidence of the illegal financing by a foreign power of the former French president's election bid.

Former Libyan PM confirms Gaddafi gave Sarkozy 50M euros for election campaign

International — Investigation

Former Libyan Prime Minister al-Baghdadi al-Mahmoudi has confirmed that the regime of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi secretly provided 50 million euros for Nicolas Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign. “We took part in Mr Sarkozy’s success and in the financing of his 2007 presidential campaign,” Mahmoudi said in an interview with Mediapart, conducted through his lawyer. "The figure of 50 million euros is correct.” Mahmoudi’s confirmation follows the publication by Mediapart of a December 2006 document, signed by the then head of Libya's foreign intelligence agency, Moussa Koussa, detailing how the Gaddafi regime agreed to “support the electoral campaign” of Sarkozy for the “sum of fifty million euros”, while the secret payments were to pass via the Libyan African Portfolio, a sovereign wealth investment fund. Fabrice Arfi and Karl Laske report.