A high-ranking senior executive, who worked along side Nicolas Sarkozy in a 1995 election campaign, is being questioned by police over the illegal funding of that campaign, reports the Wall Street Journal.
Nicolas Bazire, who was Sarkozy’s best man at his 2008 wedding, is a senior executive at luxury goods maker LVMH. He is being held without charge as police determine whether a portion of commissions, paid in 1994 to supply Pakistan with submarines, found its way back into France to support the presidential campaign of Edouard Balladur.
At the time, Sarkozy was budget minister for Balladur’s government and Bazire was chief of staff at the prime minister’s office and campaign headquarters.
Sarkozy was also recently accused of using illegal finances in his 2007 electoral campaign, a claim which he vigorously denies.
Additionally, French anti-terrorist units are determening whether a 2002 bombing in Pakistan which killed 11 French citizens was some form of retaliation for unpaid commissions relating to the submarine transaction in 1994.
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