The Court of Justice of the Republic (CJR) opened, Wednesday, January 13, a judicial investigation against the Minister of Justice, Eric Dupond-Moretti, for “illegal taking of interest”, announced the general prosecutor at the Court of cassation.
The latter was required to open this judicial information after the favorable opinion given on Friday by the requests commission of the CJR, composed of senior judges and which acts as a filter.
It had, in fact, deemed admissible the complaints lodged by the Anticor association and three magistrates ‘unions (SM, USM, SNM FO magistrates’ unit) who accuse the minister of conflicts of interest linked to his former activities as a lawyer. The complainants accuse the lawyer who became a minister of having ordered the General Inspectorate of Justice to conduct disciplinary investigations on magistrates about whom Mr. Dupond-Moretti or his clients had complained before his appointment to the government on 6 July.
The investigative committee of the CJR is now responsible for carrying out the investigations. It is made up of three magistrates from the Court of Cassation and is the only body empowered to investigate members of the government for actions carried out in the exercise of their functions.
The PNF and the fadettes affair
At the center of the case is the administrative investigation ordered by Mr. Dupond-Moretti against three magistrates of the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF) who had participated in a preliminary investigation aimed at identifying the mole who allegedly informed former President Nicolas Sarkozy and his lawyer Thierry Herzog that they were tapped. During these investigations, the PNF had examined detailed telephone invoices (called “fadettes”) of several lawyers, including those of the future minister. When this case came to light in June, the lawyer denounced “Methods of barbouzes “PNF and filed a complaint for” violation of the privacy of private life and the secrecy of correspondence. ” This complaint was withdrawn upon his arrival at Place Vendôme, in order to avoid any conflict of interest.
One of these complaints also accuses the minister of having opened another administrative investigation against the magistrate Edouard Levrault who had denounced, after the end of his functions as investigating judge in Monaco, having been pressured. Before becoming minister, Eric Dupond-Moretti had been the lawyer for one of the police officers indicted by this magistrate and had criticized the judge’s methods.
” The when the time comes, I will explain “
Asked on January 7 about the complaints of the magistrates’ unions, the Keeper of the Seals then declared: “Know that when the time comes, I’ll explain myself, you can count on me to say everything I have to say. “ Asked by AFP on Friday after the favorable opinion of the CJR’s petitions commission, the minister’s entourage declined to comment further. The government had “Noted”, Monday, of the announced opening of the judicial investigation.
For ” prevent “ any conflict of interest, a decree entrusts since the end of October to the Prime Minister, Jean Castex, all the files of Eric Dupond-Moretti having a link with his former activity of lawyer.