January 28, 2008 / 8:06 PM / 10 years ago

SocGen Trader Placed Under Formal Investigation

PARIS (Reuters) - Jerome Kerviel, the former trader at the center of the Societe Generale SA (SOGN.PA) trading scandal, has been placed under formal investigation but the probe will not include accusations of fraud, his lawyer said on Monday.

Kerviel’s lawyer, Christian Charriere-Bournazel, said he had been released under judicial supervision and would be investigated for breach of trust, breaching computer security and falsification.

“The judge didn’t follow the prosecutor who clearly was asking for too many things,” said Charriere-Bournazel, one of two lawyers acting for Kerviel.

His other lawyer, Elisabeth Meyer, called the judges’ decision “a great victory.”

They spoke after Kerviel met the two judges charged with investigating the case. The former trader, who has been accused of causing 4.9 billion euros in losses at France’s second largest listed bank, left the financial court without making a statement.

    As part of the conditions for his release, Kerviel must surrender his passport.

    In France, being placed under formal investigation does not necessarily lead to a trial and does not imply guilt.

    Reporting by Thierry Leveque and Francois Murphy; Writing by Anna Willard and James Mackenzie, editing by Leslie Gevirtz

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