Thursday, February 23, 2017

Le Pen Headquarters Raided

Le Pen’s headquarters raided by police in EU parliament jobs probe

Published: February 22, 2017
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Source: Euracitve

French police searched the headquarters of Marine Le Pen’s National Front party west of Paris on Monday (20 February) in relation to a probe into alleged misuse of European Union funds to pay parliamentary assistants.
France’s far-right party accused authorities of staging a media stunt to influence the presidential election after police searched its headquarters in an investigation into “fake jobs”.
“It looks on the face of it like a media operation whose goal is to disturb the course of the presidential campaign,” the National Front said in a statement.
The European parliament has said that, in her role as French National Front leader, Le Pen had during the 2011-12 legislature paid party staff with EU funds, which EU rules say should be used only to pay EU lawmakers’ assistants.
Le Pen has  defied a deadline set by EU authorities for her to repay funds, estimated at around €300,000.
Reportedly, the money went to Catherine Griset, a close friend of Ms Le Pen, as well as to her cabinet director. The funds were conditional on Griset spending most of her working time doing parliamentary work in Brussels or Strasbourg but the parliament says most of her time was instead spent working in the National Front’s headquarters in Paris.


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