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World

Ex-French President Sarkozy sentenced to jail in corruption trial

  • The 66-year-old was found guilty of trying to bribe a judge in Monaco in exchange for inside information on an inquiry into his campaign finances.
  • The same sentence was handed down to his co-defendants – lawyer Thierry Herzog and judge Gilbert Azibert.
01 Mar 2021

Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been sentenced to three years in jail for corruption.

The 66-year-old was found guilty of trying to bribe a judge in Monaco in exchange for inside information on an inquiry into his campaign finances.

The same sentence was handed down to his co-defendants – lawyer Thierry Herzog and judge Gilbert Azibert.

Sarkozy, who led France from 2007 to 2012, can serve the term at home.

The Judge in its ruling said that Sarkozy could serve a year at home with an electronic tag, rather than go to prison. The ex-president is expected to appeal.

The crimes were specified as influence-peddling and violation of professional secrecy.

The state's case was based on wiretaps of conversations between Herzog and Sarkozy, with prosecutors accusing him of "using secret telephone lines" to cover up his attempt to infiltrate the court.

Prosecutors said it had been established "with certainty" that judge Azibert transmitted confidential information about the Bettencourt case on an unofficial line to his friend Herzog.

One conversation "overwhelmingly" showed that Sarkozy had promised to intervene to get Azibert a post in Monaco, they said.