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French court dismisses Sarkozy’s appeal to avoid trial

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Paris, Oct 25 (IANS) A Paris court on Thursday dismissed an appeal by former French President Nicolas Sarkozy against a decision to have him stand trial, as part of a probe into allegations of illegal financing during his 2012 presidential campaign that ultimately ended in his defeat to Francois Hollande.

The verdict by the Paris Court of Appeal, however, did not rule out Sarkozy’s chances to seek a further appeal to try and avoid standing in court for allegedly exceeding the French legal ceiling on election campaign expenses.

His lawyer Thierry Herzog said he would now appeal to France’s highest appeals court, Efe news reported.

The court decided not to consider the main argument wielded by the defence of Sarkozy, who held the post of President from 2007-2012, although the decision to put him on trial was taken by only one of the two investigating magistrates while the second magistrate abstained in a highly unusual judicial decision.

On May 16, the prosecutor had requested magistrates to confirm the 63-year-old former President’s indictment on charges of illegal financing of his 2012 campaign.

The so-called “Bygmalion” case involves accusations of ignoring warnings that Sarkozy was spending way above the legal limit. According to the prosecutor, Sarkozy spent at least 42.8 million euros ($48.84 million), nearly double the legal ceiling.

This was not the only judicial case chasing Sarkozy, and unless his other appeal succeeds, he is due to appear in another court for alleged influence peddling.


(This story has not been edited by Newsd staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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