Sarkozy named in arms deal corruption scandal ahead of presidential elections


Damien Gayle
Mail Online

January 3, 2012

Nicolas Sarkozy has been named by an investigation into an alleged party funding corruption scandal said to have led to the deaths of 11 French engineers in a Pakistan bomb attack.

It is claimed Mr Sarkozy must have been aware of the establishment of a shell company suspected of diverting cash from arms sales commissions to fund the 1995 presidential campaign of then prime minister Edouard Balladur.

The commissions, paid as part of arms sales to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, were not illegal under French law at the time, but channelling the money back to France was, and remains so.

Magistrates also allege the subsequent freezing of the payments by President Jacques Chirac led indirectly to a bomb attack on a bus in Pakistan which killed 11 French engineers.

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