Nicolas Sarkozy, former French President, made history today after appearing
in a Parisian court to face corruption charges.
Sacré bleu. In 2014, investigators seized Sarkozy’s diaries to investigate claims he accepted illicit payments from L’Oreal heiress Liliane Bettencourt for his presidential campaign. Sarkozy has been accused of bribing a judge to leak confidential info on the investigation in return for a cushy job in Monaco.
New phone, who dis… The case rests on a wiretapped burner phone Sarkozy bought under the alias ‘Paul Bismuth’ to communicate with the judge. Sarkozy denies any wrongdoing, calling the Bismuth accusations “an insult to my intelligence.”
Like mentor, like mentee. This is the first time a French head of state has faced corruption charges – although Sarkozy’s predecessor and mentor Jacques Chirac was convicted of embezzlement in 2011.
Burned by a burner. Other than the 10-year sentence Sarkozy faces, the trial is a humiliating footnote to a political career tainted by legal woes.
- Sarkozy has also been accused of receiving illicit campaign funding from Gaddafi and will appear in court next year on charges he overspent on his 2012 re-election bid.
The irony: Sarkozy is a lawyer.