Paris, Feb 7: Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy is to face trial for the alleged irregular fincing of his 2012 presidential campaign, the media reported on Tuesday. Sarkozy is to appear in court along with 13 others, said the “France Info” broadcaster, citing court sources.
The case was origilly opened in 2014 when a media investigation found that Sarkozy had surpassed the 22.5 million euro ($24 million) spending cap on his presidential campaign for an election he lost to Socialist Party candidate Francois Hollande, the incumbent President.
Prosecutors accused Sarkozy and members of his Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) party of having conspired with communications company Bygmalion to cover up the overspend with false invoices, Efe news reported. The allegations against Sarkozy suggested that the former head of state breached the campaign spending limit by some $15 million. Rather than invoicing the presidential campaign, the Bygmalion firm allegedly charged those extra expenses to Sarkozy’s centre-right UMP, since re-branded as the Republicans, thus bypassing French electoral law. In France, the case is popularly referred to as the Bygmalion affair. (IANS)