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Former French President Sarkozy facing new legal charges

FILE PHOTO: French former president Nicolas Sarkozy attends a ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe as part of commemorations marking the 101st anniversary of the 11 November 1918 armistice, ending World War I, in Paris, France November 11, 2019. Ludovic Marin/Pool via REUTERS

PARIS (Reuters) - Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy is facing new legal charges over alleged illegal financing of his successful election campaign in 2007, the financial prosecutor’s office said on Friday, confirming an earlier Mediapart press report.

Sarkozy, who once again claimed his innocence on his Facebook page, has now been indicted for “conspiracy” in the inquiry over alleged Libyan financing of this campaign.

In 2018, Sarkozy, who was president of France between 2007 and 2012, had been indicted for illegal financing and passive corruption.

“After four days of questioning, during which I answered all the questions that I was asked (...) my innocence has again been disregarded by a decision that doesn’t bring any evidence of any illicit financing”, Sarkozy said on social media.

Sarkozy, who claims he’s victim of a “plot” in this case, is the second former French president to stand trial after the late Jacques Chirac.

Reporting by Nicolas Delame and Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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