France's Ex-President Chirac Found Guilty of Corruption

World | December 15, 2011, Thursday // 13:01|  views

A file photo taken 06 November 2006 shows then French President Jacques Chirac at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France. EPA/BGNES

France's former President Jacques Chirac has received a 2-year suspended prison sentence for embezzlement and abusing public confidence.

Chirac, 79, was accused of paying members of his Rally for the Republic (RPR) party for municipal jobs that did not exist back in the time when he was mayor of Paris. The former President was not in court to hear the verdict because of health problems, BBC informs.

The prosecution had urged the judge to acquit Chirac and nine others accused in the trial.

"For all those who could have expected a rejection of the case against him, or at least no penalty, the ruling can appear disappointing," Chirac lawyer Georges Kiejman commented after the verdict, expressing his hoe that the court's decision does not have any impact on the affection the French have for their former President.

Chirac became the first French head of state to face prosecution since the World War II era.

Alain Juppe, France's current Foreign Minister, received a 14-month suspended sentence back n 2004 in connection with the same case.

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Tags: Jacques Chirac, embezzlement, trial, Alain Juppe, president


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