France: Marine Le Pen targeted with European anti-fraud report

Far-right French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen and his relatives are accused of embezzling about 600,000 euros in European public funds during their tenure as members of the European Parliament.

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The accusation comes from the European Anti-fraud Office, according to a new report revealed by the French media site Mediapart, on Saturday, and it was submitted to French justice.

In response to a question by AFP, the Paris Public Prosecutor’s Office confirmed that it had received this report on March 11, which is currently being analyzed.

Reaction to AFP May Rudolph Boslot, lawyer for Marine Le Pen, who participated in the second round of the presidential elections, which will be held on April 24:, where she will face the incumbent President Emmanuel Macron.

Me Bosselut also says he is “dissatisfied with the way Olaf (European Fraud Office) is behaving, without a contradictory character” and with “the outdated realities of more than ten years” for some.

He added that Marine Le Pen “has never been summoned by any French judicial authority”, expressing also regret that neither he nor his client has received the final report.

According to him, Olaf’s investigation has been open since 2016 and Le Pen was questioned by mail in March 2021.

Olaf’s new report, of which Mediapart publishes excerpts, concerns fees that political groups could use in the course of their mandate as MEPs and that could have been used by Marine Le Pen and those close to her for national political purposes or for personal expenses or services. In favor of businesses close to his party, the National Rally (RN) and the far-right parliamentary group Europe of Nations and Liberties (ENL).

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Olaf Marine Le Pen, three former members of the European Parliament – her father Jean-Marie Le Pen, her ex-boyfriend Louis Eliot and Bruno Golnich, a member of the National Bureau of the RN – and the ENL were implicated.

The office accuses them of embezzling about 600 thousand euros, and recommends their recovery.

According to the report, the National Rally candidate had personally embezzled around €137,000 in public funds from the Strasbourg Parliament when she was a member of the European Parliament between 2004 and 2017.

Since June 2017, Marine Le Pen has also been prosecuted in the Paris investigation on suspicion of bogus jobs in the European Parliament for party aides.

She was charged with “embezzlement of public funds” and “complicity” in this crime as part of this investigation.

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