Keyword: fraud

Couple jailed for defrauding Paris attacks compensation fund

A man and woman who fraudulently claimed for compensation from a fund set up to help victims of the November 2015 jihadist attacks in Paris, which left 130 dead and hundreds wounded, were jailed after it was found they were in fact at home in southern France during the events.

Paris prosecutor calls for three-year jail term for ex-budget minister

Close to the end of a two-week trial, the prosecutor demanded that Jérôme Cahuzac, who was exposed by Mediapart for holding a tax-evading bank account abroad, be also barred from elected office for five years and that his wife be sentenced to two years in jail.  

Why French anti-corruption services are cracking at the seams

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France’s anti-corruption services are over-stretched, under-staffed and under-performing, lacking both the human and material resources to effectively carry out the investigations handed to them. The problem affects both the judicial services and the specialised police units that carry out the in-the-field investigations into white-collar crime. Mediapart legal affairs correspondent Michel Deléan reports on a deepening crisis.  

Police raid Front National HQ in European Parliament funds probe

The far-right party is suspected of using assistants paid salaries by the European Parliament for local party work in France.

French far-right leader Marine Le Pen questioned in fraud probe

Her Front National party faces probe over misuse of company assets and conspiracy to commit fraud at national elections in 2012.

Front National party placed under investigation for fraud

The French far-right party, reeling from internal disputes, is suspected of defrauding the state by inflating campaign expenses in 2012 elections.

Sarkozy election funding scam – who's who in the Bygmalion affair

 © Reuters © Reuters

In recent days six people have been placed under formal investigation in connection with the presidential election financial scandal that is rocking the main right-wing opposition party, the UMP. Judges are investigating a system of fake invoicing by communications firm Bygmalion in 2012 in which they unlawfully billed the UMP rather than Nicolas Sarkozy's election team for work they did  organising campaign rallies. This was apparently done to avoid the Sarkozy campaign breaching strict rules on how much presidential candidates can spend. This growing scandal is now potentially a major threat to Sarkozy's political comeback, though the former president himself claims he knew nothing of the affair or even the name Bygmalion at the time. Here Mathilde Mathieu, Ellen Salvi and Marine Turchi give a guide to the main players in the so-called Bygmalion affair and the issues at stake.

France sees flood of tax regularisation requests

Budget minister says 8,500 tax cheats have come clean after government agreed to reduce punishment for those who hide funds abroad.

Gang sold plonk under one of France's most expensive wine labels

Prosecutors in Burgundy say a network of counterfeiters sold at least 400 bottles of cheap wine as Romanée-Conti for a total of 2 million euros.

French Catholic school 'fraud' case highlights lack of funding controls

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Prosecutors have launched an investigation into a state-subsidised Catholic secondary school in northern France over suspected 'fraud, forgery and use of forgery, misuse of company assets and embezzlement'. The private school's management is alleged to have set up a system of double invoicing in order to milk extra subsidies. When a new headteacher reported the irregularities to the authorities, she was promptly sacked. But, as Lucie Delaporte reports, perhaps the most disturbing aspect of the affair is the clear lack of supervision over how public funding of private Catholic schools is being spent.

UBS France placed under investigation

French branch of Swiss bank faces allegations it helped try to persuade rich French clients to open undeclared accounts in Switzerland.

Tapie-Lagarde affair enters new phase as arbitration judge is investigated for conspiracy to defraud

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Bernard Tapie Bernard Tapie

One of the arbitration judges who oversaw the controversial 403 million-euro award to businessman Bernard Tapie has been placed under formal investigation for alleged “conspiracy to commit fraud”. As Mediapart's legal affairs expert Michel Deléan explains, this dramatic development shows that the long-running affair is rapidly gathering momentum.

Fighting against the organised crime of tax evasion

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The latest twists in the Cahuzac affair show that money, when it becomes an end in itself, is like crime in its desire to escape the law. Here Mediapart republishes an article by Editor-in-Chief Edwy Plenel in which he sets out how tax evasion has become a colossal and institutionalised business at the centre of the economy. Fighting it has never been more urgent, he argues, yet little effort - if any - is being made to prevent it or to sanction those who are bleeding society of vital resources.

French budget minister and Swiss bank account affair: police open investigation

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Le 3 janvier à l'Elysée.  © Reuters Le 3 janvier à l'Elysée. © Reuters

A month after the publication of revelations that budget minister Jérôme Cahuzac held an undisclosed Swiss bank account until 2010, a formal investigation has been opened into the affair, Mediapart can reveal. The prosecution authorities have started a preliminary inquiry into the alleged 'laundering of the proceeds of tax fraud'. The investigation is being carried out by detectives from the national financial and tax investigation unit the Division nationale d’investigations financières et fiscales. Fabrice Arfi and Michel Deléan report.

Swiss bank account affair - the budget minister's lies

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J. Cahuzac © Reuters J. Cahuzac © Reuters

Jérôme Cahuzac, the budget minister accused of having an undisclosed Swiss bank account until 2010, has withheld the truth surrounding the affair from the highest offices of state, Mediapart can reveal. Mediapart can disclose that the person who possesses the key recording on which Cahuzac (pictured) is heard discussing his bank account has himself approached the office of French President François Hollande to confirm it is genuine. Meanwhile email correspondence between the minister and friends shows that he himself does not deny the authenticity of the recording. And Mediapart can also reveal that the tax authorities have started to carry out thorough checks of the budget minister’s recent tax declarations, which appear to show numerous discrepancies. All of which, says Fabrice Arfi, is proof that Jérôme Cahuzac is in an untenable political situation.