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Former French anti-narcotics chief investigated for drug trafficking

Patrick Kovarik, AFP | François Thierry was the emblematic chief of narcotics between 2010 and 2016.
2 min

France's former anti-drugs agency boss has been placed under formal investigation over allegations he aided and abetted narco-traffickers, the Paris prosecutor's office said on Friday.


François Thierry, who ran the drug-fighting Ocrtis agency between 2010 and 2016, faces allegations of complicity in the acquisition and transportation of drugs and in the export of drugs by organised gangs.

The inquiry centres on a record seizure of seven tonnes of cannabis in Paris in October 2015. Thierry is suspected of allowing a gang to import the drugs, so that their smuggling methods could be monitored.

The Paris prosecutor opened an inquiry into the practices of Octris later that year, following information from a man who said he had infiltrated a narco ring and worked on behalf of Thierry.

France's Libération newspaper reported in May 2016 that the man given the cover name "Stéphane V" by police also said he had worked for the US Drug Enforcement Administration.

Thierry has been part of France’s counter-terror unit Sdat since leaving Ocrtis in 2016.

His lawyer Francis Szpiner said Friday the decision to place his client under formal investigation was “unfair, hypocritical and scandalous”.


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