Paris (AFP) – searches took place on Thursday against the former head of the UMP Jean-Francois Cope, including its office in the National Assembly, in Bygmalion case, do we learned from source close to the investigation, confirming a report by RTL.
In the case of false invoices that helped conceal campaign spending Nicolas Sarkozy in the 2012 presidential election, judges and investigators seek to determine what knowledge had political fraud.
searches had been held in May and October to the UMP headquarters. These Thursday came a day after the lifting of the parliamentary immunity of the UMP Philippe Briand, the former treasurer of the campaign Mr Sarkozy, by the office of the National Assembly.
Investigators the anti-corruption office of the PJ (Oclciff), which have many accounting items and testimonies, have an Event conviction and Co., a subsidiary of Bygmalion, addressed to the UMP and “request” to 18 € 5 million of false invoices in 2012, according to a police source.
The goal was to charge these bills to the UMP for “concealing the actual expenses” of the campaign and not to die the legal limit of 22.5 million euros, the source said.
Seven people have been indicted in this case, four former leaders Bygmalion or Event and Co. and three former executives UMP, including his ex-CEO, Eric Cesari, a relative of Nicolas Sarkozy.
Jerome Lavrilleux, the only one who recognized the UMP fraud, says it has been decided and put in place after the presidential election lost by Nicolas Sarkozy, while many executives are Bygmalion decision making at the beginning of April, 2012, well before the first turn. Mr. Lavrilleux assured that Nicolas Sarkozy and Jean-Francois Cope, of which he was very close, were not aware of.
The investigation was opened especially for embezzlement but was extended from illegal campaign financing offense, an offense that can target Nicolas Sarkozy.
Bygmalion was led by relatives of Jean-Francois Cope, Bastien Millot and Guy Alves. The former head of the UMP, forced to resign by this case ensures that he was not aware of the fraud.