December 9, 2019 / 9:31 AM / a month ago

French far-left leader sentenced to suspended prison term

FILE PHOTO: Jean-Luc Melenchon, leader of the far-left opposition France Insoumise (France Unbowed) political party, arrives to deliver a speech during a debate on migration at the National Assembly in Paris, France, October 7, 2019. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

PARIS (Reuters) - French far-left leader Jean-Luc Melenchon has been sentenced to a suspended three-months prison term and given a 8,000 euros fine for intimidating officials who were investigating him over possible funding irregularities, a Paris suburb court said on Monday.

The ruling, which relates to 2018 raids on his home and party offices conducted at the behest of the public prosecutor’s office in Paris, was widely awaited after a trial Melenchon cast as political.

Melenchon, a spearhead of the opposition against French President Emmanuel Macron’s economic policies and a supporter of the recent “yellow vest” anti-government protests, won an unprecedented 19.5 percent in the first round of the 2017 presidential election.

Reporting by Simon Carraud, Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Toby Chopra

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