Former French PM Dominique de Villepin was cleared this week by an appeals court of conspiring to smear his arch-rival, President Nicolas Sarkozy, in the 'Clearstream' case. But this doesn't mean he can rest on his laurels: Villepin is now accused by a former middleman of taking envelopes of 'dirty' cash from African leaders.
A French appeals court on Wednesday upheld the acquittal of former prime minister Dominique de Villepin (pictured) on charges that he conspired to sabotage Nicolas Sarkozy's 2007 presidential bid in a scandal dubbed the Clearstream affair.
There are suitcases and envelopes of cash changing hands in Wednesday's papers - we look at three intermediaries suspected of being the president's link to dodgy deals, and an inquiry into illegal campaign funding.
A Paris court heard on Thursday the final plea of public prosecutors, who decided to appeal former Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin's acquittal in the Clearstream scandal, in which he was accused of slandering President Nicolas Sarkozy.
Marc Pereleman interviews A. Craig Copetas, Senior Writer with Bloomberg News; Patrick Jarreau, journalist and blogger; José-Manuel Lamarque, Senior Reporter with Radio France; and Celestine Bohlen, Journalist.
France's former Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin appeared at a Paris appeals court on Monday to face charges he used smear tactics to discredit arch-rival Nicolas Sarkozy during the 2007 presidential campaign.
Former Prime minister Dominique de Villepin is set to appear in court for a second time, to answer charges he tried to smear his rival Nicolas Sarkozy. The decision by a public prosecutor to appeal Villepin's acquittal is raising questions of political interference in the case. Also at issue is the role of investigating magistrates. Independent from the government, they long had a reputation for taking on complex cases without fear of political interference.