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Tags: france | billionaire | paid | votes

French Billionaire Senator Paid for Mayoral Votes

By    |   Wednesday, 18 September 2013 04:09 AM EDT

The French senator and billionaire Serge Dassault is accused of paying hundreds of thousands of euros to influence a mayoral election in 2010, according to the French news site France 24, which has presented evidence it says “he will be unable to deny.”

France24 obtained the information from Mediapart, a French online investigative and opinion journal. According to the news agency,  Dassault paid huge bribes to influence the 2010 mayoral election. Dassault is France’s fifth-richest man.

The allegations can be traced back to December 2012, when the investigative weekly Le Canard Enchainé accused Dassault, who was mayor of Corbeil-Essonnes in southern Paris from 1995 to 2009, of paying hundreds of thousands of euros in bribes to ensure the electoral victory of his successor Jean-Pierre Bechter.

On Sunday, Mediapart published secretly taped recordings of the senator, who is a member of the opposition right-wing Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) party, telling two men that he could not complete the illegal payments because he was under investigation.

The tapes record Dassault telling the men: “I can’t pay any more; nothing can be done as it is illegal. I’m under police surveillance.”

The recordings were made in November 2012, orchestrated by two disgruntled “fixers,” who had not been paid the alleged 1.7 million euros, the equivalent of 2.7 million dollars, for drumming up voter support in exchange for cash in working class areas of Corbeil-Essonnes, a suburb of Paris.

The two men in question were victims of an attempted shooting a mere three months after the meeting.

The new evidence will intensify a judicial probe into Dassault, who has long been suspected by investigators of corruption.

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Europe
The French senator and billionaire Serge Dassault is accused of paying hundreds of thousands of euros to influence a mayoral election in 2010, according to the French news site France 24, which has presented evidence it says “he will be unable to deny.”
france,billionaire,paid,votes
275
2013-09-18
Wednesday, 18 September 2013 04:09 AM
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