Russian firm suing France's far-right party over loan debt - court document

MOSCOW, Feb 18 (Reuters) - A Russian firm is suing France’s right-wing party led by Marine Le Pen to recover outstanding debt on a loan made years earlier, court documents seen by Reuters show.

Le Pen’s Rassemblement National, formerly known as the National Front, took out a 9-million-euro loan at the First Czech Russian Bank in 2014. The bank has since had its operating licence revoked because it held insufficient capital.

A Russian company called Aviazapchast filed a lawsuit against the political party in December last year, according to court documents. The firm, which specializes in the sale of aircraft parts, had acquired the claim to the loan.

Le Pen’s party has struggled to secure funding from Western banks. The party is heavily indebted and has had its accounts in France closed by banks which declined to say why.

When contacted by Reuters on Tuesday, Rassemblement National said it was in the process of repaying its debt.

A preliminary hearing into the case is set to be held in Moscow on June 2, the documents showed. (Reporting by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber in Moscow and by Matthieu Protard in Paris Editing by Andrew Osborn)