François Fillon

Defeated Fillon steps back from front-line politics

France — Link

The conservative said he would not play a senior role for his party in June's Parliamentary elections but would be a 'simple party activist again'.

Presidential candidate Fillon slammed for 'sexist' quip to journalist

France — Link

French conservative presidential election candidate François Fillon, whose campaign has been plagued by a fake jobs scandal and his related placement under investigation for suspected fraud and misuse of company assets, has caused a storm of protest after he suggested, during a TV interview on Thursday, that a journalist questioning him was unaware of his manifesto because she was pregnant.

Fillon benefactor reveals 'pressure' for his silence and why his memoirs are on hold

International — Interview

Lawyer Robert Bourgi, 72, is a veteran figure of “la Françafrique”, the once-rife secret and corrupt network of relations between successive French and despotic African governments, which included the illegal funding of French politicians and parties in return for favours and protection. His name resurfaced last month in the scandal-hit presidential election campaign of conservative candidate François Fillon, when Bourgi revealed it was he who offered Fillon two expensive tailor-made suits, raising further questions over Fillon’s probity and political independence. In this interview from Beirut, where he is sitting out the rest of the election campaign, Bourgi gave Mediapart his version of his relationship with Fillon, who he says asked him to deny being a benefactor, and lifts the lid on the murky practices in French politics. His account offers an insight into decades of political corruption.

How Syrian crisis entered the French presidential election


The decision by United States president Donald Trump to launch air strikes against the regime in Syria in response to the use of chemical weapons has created waves in France's election campaign. Most of the presidential candidates have been critical of the unilateral American action. Two notable exceptions are Socialist Party candidate Benoît Hamon and, to a lesser extent, the independent candidate and favourite Emmanuel Macron. Lénaïg Bredoux reports on how the candidates for the Elysée have reacted to the Syrian crisis.

Journalists and judges investigating François Fillon receive death threats


Bullets and threatening letters have been sent to four judges plus journalists at two media organisations, including Mediapart. Of the judges who have been singled out, one is the head of the national financial crimes prosecution unit, and the other three are the judges who have been designated to investigate the 'fake jobs' allegations involving right-wing presidential candidate François Fillon and his wife Penelope. The other media outlet that received a threatening letter and a .22 calibre Long Rifle bullet was Le Canard Enchaîné, the weekly investigative newspaper that first broke the Fillon story. Matthieu Suc reports.

French presidential candidate François Fillon pelted with flour

France — Link

Former PM was on way to stage at event in Strasbourg when man in T-shirt with words 'Students for Fillon' emptied a packet of flour on his face.

Is this French presidential election's unpredictability really so unusual?

France — Chronicle

The chatter about the French presidential election focuses on the likely high abstention rate, the record number of undecided voters, a possible last-minute surge by the Right and whether one can trust the polls. In particular, just under three weeks from the first round of voting, the talk is of how unpredictable and hard to forecast this 2017 election is. But, Hubert Huertas, argues it is no more unpredictable than usual. It is just that when it comes to the mood of voters, the rules have changed.

Fillon runs egg-throwing gauntlet as Macron increases lead

France — Link

An opinion survey this weekend confirmed centrist French presidential election candidate Emmanuel Macron as frontrunner in both rounds of the voting, while scandal-hit conservative candidate François Fillon, hanging on in third position despite a fall in poll ratings, was met by roudy protestors during a campaign visit to south-west France.  

Hollande slams Fillon claims he runs secret cell

France — Link

Scandal-hit conservative presidential candidate François Fillon, mired in graft scandals and under investigation for fraud and misusing public funds, claimed that his predicament was the work of a secret plot by socialist president François Hollande, who has firmly dismissed the 'untruthful allegations'.

Kremlin says report of Fillon fee for Putin meeting is 'fake news'

International — Link

A Kremlin spokesman said revelations that French conservative presidential candidate François Fillon received, via his consultency firm, 50,000 dollars to introduce a Lebanese pipeline construction tycoon to Russian President Vladimir Putin 'is what in English we call fake news'.

Graft probe widens into French presidential candidate Fillon

France — Link

The judicial investigation into suspected misappropriation of public funds by conservative presidential candidate François Fillon has been widened to include suspected forgery, while new press revelations allege he was paid 50,000 dollars in 2015 to introduce a Lebanese businessman to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

French presidential candidate Fillon formally placed under investigation in fraud case


The French conservative party’s presidential candidate, François Fillon, was on Tuesday formally placed under investigation for the suspected fraudulent payments made by him out of public funds to his wife and two of his children who he employed as parliamentary assistants. While the move was widely expected, it is a major new blow for the former prime minister who was the election frontrunner until the alleged fake jobs scandal emerged in January. Meanwhile, further press revelations since the weekend include the disclosure that his children paid him regular sums of money from their salaries as his assistant, and that a mysterious benefactor has gifted him over the past five years with luxury clothing worth more than 48,000 euros.

Struggling Fillon hit by 'gifts of luxury clothing' report

France — Link

French conservative presidential candidate François Fillon, already engulfed in a scandal over allegations he gave his wife and children 'fake jobs' paid from parliamentary funds, has partially confirmed press reports that a wealthy benefactor had bought him luxury clothing worth more than 48,000 euros.

Fillon's party apologizes for anti-Semitic attack on rival Macron

France — Link

His party had tweeted image of independent candidate with a hooked nose, top hat and carrying a red sickle with which he was cutting a cigar.

François Fillon 'did not declare loan in 2013'

France — Link

Candidate's lawyer said the 50,000 euro loan from businessman Marc Ladreit de Lacharrière did not need to be declared and had been repaid.