March 18, 2008 / 2:41 PM / 12 years ago

Former SocGen trader Kerviel leaves prison

A man, who French media is identifying as Societe Generale employee Jerome Kerviel, is seen in this undated photo. REUTERS/Handout. EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. NO ARCHIVES. NO SALES.

PARIS (Reuters) - Jerome Kerviel, the Frenchman at the heart of the world’s biggest rogue trading scandal, left jail on Tuesday after winning a legal battle against detention.

Kerviel, 31, walked free from the Sante prison in Paris after five weeks in custody while investigators continue to probe heavy losses at French bank Societe Generale.

Looking relaxed in a dark suit and pink shirt and accompanied by his lawyer, Kerviel posed and smiled briefly for cameras and was driven off in a small car.

His lawyer successfully appealed against his detention earlier on Tuesday.

He has been released on conditions limiting his movements.

SocGen unveiled 4.9 billion euros ($7.64 billion) of trading losses in January and blamed them on unauthorized stock market deals carried out by Kerviel, a junior trader at the bank.

Kerviel is under formal investigation for breach of trust, computer abuse and falsification.

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta

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