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France

French Green Party official charged in drug case

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2012-10-14

The deputy mayor of France's 13th arrondissement was charged on Saturday in connection with a police investigation into drug trafficking and money laundering. Florence Lamblin of the Green Party denies the accusations.

France’s Green Party found itself embroiled in scandal on Saturday after an elected official was charged with laundering money raised by the sale of drugs.

Florence Lamblin, deputy mayor of Paris’ 13th Arrondissement is one of nine people charged with organised money laundering and criminal association as part of a police investigation into a Franco-Swiss drug trafficking network.

Lamblin of France’s EELV (Europe Ecology - The Greens) Party denies the accusations, and her lawyer Jerôme Boursican denied French media reports she had resigned her post on Saturday.

French news sites reported that police raided Lamblin’s home on Wednesday morning where they found bundles of cash totalling almost 400,000 euros.

Boursican told French media that he would be asking a judge to dismiss the case against his client “as soon as possible” and blamed her involvement on a “judicial error”.

“Florence Lamblin does not know anyone linked to this case and has no connection with any of the other people who have been charged,” Boursican said.

Earlier this week police arrested 17 people in France and three in Switzerland as part of an investigation into the trafficking of cannabis between Morocco and the Paris region.

According to an AFP judicial source, the investigation is one of the biggest police probes into the laundering of drug money France ever has seen. More than one million euros in cash has been seized as well as several works of art. Police have also confiscated weapons and machines for counting money.

The operation to launder the proceeds of drug sales was described by investigators as a “complex machine” and is believed to have involved numerous “white collar” workers and property deals.
 

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Date created : 2012-10-13

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