Suspicions of conflicts of interest: Dupond-Moretti returned to trial, his lawyers appeal

According to Me Lorrain, it is “now up to the plenary assembly of the Court of Cassation to take up this case” with a new decision on the entire procedure, “and to rule in particular on the numerous irregularities which have marred this case for two years.

The appeal does not annul the reference, but suspends its effects. According to a source familiar with the matter, it is not possible to say to date when the Court of Cassation will render its decision.

– “Legitimacy” –

The referral for illegal taking of interest of the minister before the CJR, the only one authorized to judge the members of the government for crimes or misdemeanors committed in the exercise of their mandate, will not fail to pose once again the question of the maintenance in the government of the former penitentiary.

“We believe that his resignation from the government would prevent this sequence from fueling the feeling of mistrust in public opinion towards the entire political class,” said the NGO Transparency International.

Asked by AFP, Matignon did not wish to comment on the court decision or say whether the question of the maintenance of the ex-lawyer arose. “The procedure is in progress, the Keeper of the Seals has exercised an appeal as is his right”, it was said. “The deportation mechanism has been organized in such a way that it does not in any way affect the exercise of his mission as Minister of Justice”.

He had been officially excluded from all business related to his former activities as a lawyer, under a “deportation” decree published in October 2020.

Appointed at the head of the Chancellery in the summer of 2020 and reappointed to this position after the re-election in May of Emmanuel Macron, Mr. Dupond-Moretti constantly repeats that he holds his “legitimacy of the President of the Republic and of the Prime Minister and of them only”.

The two main magistrates’ unions, the Union Syndicale des Magistrates (USM) and the Syndicat de la magistrature (SM) underlined in a press release an “unprecedented” situation for the minister, in view of the suspicions of “serious attack on the probity” which earned him this trial, fearing a “new conflict of interest” if he “had to name his own accuser” after the scheduled retirement in June of François Molins.

– “Fadettes” –

Eric Dupond-Moretti, indicted in July 2021, is accused of having taken advantage of his position to settle scores with magistrates with whom he had had trouble when he was a lawyer. What he disputes.

A first file concerns the administrative investigation he ordered in September 2020, targeting three magistrates of the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF).

These magistrates had had his detailed telephone bills (“fadettes”) go through when Mr. Dupond-Moretti was still a star at the bar, in order to flush out a possible mole who would have informed Nicolas Sarkozy that he was being wiretapped in the case. of corruption known as “Paul Bismuth”.

A PNF deputy prosecutor, Patrice Amar, and his ex-boss, Eliane Houlette, appeared in September before the Superior Council of the Judiciary (CSM), which is due to render its decision on October 19. No sanction was required against them. The third magistrate implicated, Ulrika Delaunay-Weiss, was cleared before any hearing before the CSM.

In a second file, the Keeper of the Seals is accused of having initiated administrative proceedings against a former investigating judge seconded to Monaco, Edouard Levrault, who had indicted one of his ex-clients when he was a lawyer. Eric Dupond-Moretti had criticized his “cowboy” methods.

The CSM decided on September 15 not to sanction Mr. Levrault, considering that “no disciplinary breach could be blamed on him”. A decision that sounded like a disavowal of the minister.

Throughout the investigation, Eric Dupond-Moretti repeated that he had only “follow the recommendations of his administration”.

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