The ex-minister of the economy, was sentenced Monday for “negligence” and in particular in the awarding of 405 million euros of public money.
World | • updated | By
the boss of The international monetary Fund (IMF) and former minister of economy, Christine Lagarde, was sentenced Monday, December 19 by the Court of justice of the Republic for “negligence” in the matter of the arbitration, which had been rendered in favor of Bernard Tapie in 2008. It might as up to a year in prison and 15,000 euros fine, but was exempted from punishment, the Court believed that the ” personality “ and ” international reputation “ of Mme Lagarde, as well as the fact that it bataillait at the time against a ” international financial crisis “, militated in his favor.
Specifically, it was for the three judges, the six deputies and six senators to decide if the minister had not waived a bit soon to call into question private arbitration, which has granted hundreds of millions of euros of public money to the businessman in marseille.
Explanations : Case Tapie : if you’ve missed an episode
Pressure for private arbitration
The latter, desiring to settle its dispute with the former state-owned bank Credit lyonnais, had proposed the mediation of an arbitral tribunal, a court of private formed for the occasion and consisting of lawyers that are supposed to be strictly independent. It is rare that an arbitral tribunal be established then that the dispute has already been brought before the ordinary courts, and even more so when such a sum of public money is at stake.
But, surprise, the ministry of economy, headed by Christine Lagarde, gives, in 2007, his agreement that the procedure be initiated. The investigation will show later that multiple pressures have been exerted, in particular on representatives of the public consortium responsible for managing the liabilities of Crédit lyonnais (the bank is bankrupt), its administrator, Patrick Peugeot, will resign the following year. It brings into question Stéphane Richard, then director of the cabinet of Christine Lagarde and the current chairman and chief executive officer of Orange, and beyond him the minister of the economy itself.
the Second surprise, less than a year later, in July 2008, the arbitral tribunal gives reason for Bernard Tapie and ordered the consortium, that is to say, the State, to pay to the businessman 405 million euros, of which 45 million euros in moral damages.
” Frail boundary between political and judicial “
The judges were of the opinion that the bank had ” failed to fulfil its obligations, whether in respect of the duty of loyalty or the prohibition of wearing a matching “ and have the passage denounced ” exceptional brutality “ of the Credit lyonnais vis-à-vis his former client. This decision, which allocates € 405 million to the taxpayer, causes of sharp criticism.
The State waives the right then to file an action for nullity against arbitral award. It is especially on this point that Christine Lagarde was considered. It concluded a bit too quickly according to investigators, the legal arguments for an appeal were too slim. the ” Before a decision as scandalous, even if we only have one chance in a thousand to win “, he had to go, said his side, Bruno Bézard, who was then in charge of the Agency of the interests of the State.
For the general prosecutor Jean-Claude Marin, ” making a bad decision is not (…) in itself alone a crime “. the ” It is the frail boundary between the political and the judicial that you will have to be determined “, was there a summary to the address of the members of the Court.
also Read : Trial Lagarde : a decision inaudible