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Former PM de Villepin files suit against Sarkozy

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-09-29

Dominique de Villepin, the former French PM charged with plotting to discredit Nicolas Sarkozy in the build-up to the 2007 presidential poll, has filed suit against the French president for violating his right to the presumption of innocence.

AFP - Former prime minister Dominique de Villepin filed suit Monday against Nicolas Sarkozy after the French president called him and other defendants in a smear trial "guilty", a judicial official said.
  
Villepin accuses Sarkozy of violating his right to presumption of innocence when he said in a television interview last week that the "guilty parties" in the so-called Clearstream affair were on trial.
  
Under French law, the head of state enjoys immunity from legal action and the suit would in theory only be heard once Sarkozy is out of office.
  
Villepin's lawyers had on Thursday branded Sarkozy's remarks as "scandalous" and immediately announced plans to launch legal action against the president.

Date created : 2009-09-28

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