Eric Woerth Bettencourt is complete. The former Minister Nicolas Sarkozy budget and treasurer of his campaign was released this Thursday, May 28 in the two aspects of the case Bettencourt in which he was prosecuted: the influence peddling file in which he was accused of having granted the Legion of Honor to Patrice de Maistre in exchange for the hiring of his wife Florence. And the issue of abuse of weakness – the main part of the case – in which he was suspected of February 2007 touched 50,000 euros Liliane Bettencourt via Patrice de Maistre. This deemed remittance money was denounced by the former accountant Claire Thibout. This is the envelope that has done so much scandal in the case.
A reasoned judgment
The release of Eric Woerth for influence peddling is detailed in 20 page judgment. His release in the main pane of abuse of weakness is in turn highly motivated in 4 pages. Bordeaux judges held to wear clearly on paper the reasons for their decision.
The judges first point out that the former minister was prosecuted “for the handling offense without being under the original offense alleged to Patrick de Maistre, “that the two men still have” denied having received sums of money in cash “and that the judicial investigation” did not uncover these discounts “… Suit detail along appointments between the two men and a powerful argument raised by the defense of Eric Woerth: “the sum could not be from the account [where Claire Thibout had accreditation] since the cash book” shows that the balance does not allowed
A surprising encounter
The judgment, however, bluntly exposes the dark sides.
According seized a meeting agendas . was reached between Eric Woerth and Patrice de Maistre 13 September 2006 (…) to present the legal maxima for financing by a particular political party “
The judges are surprised on several points:
It is at least strange that Patrice de Maistre is needed to meet the UMP treasurer in person to collect this information it was open to find on a website. ” They also write that “it is undisputed that the two meetings between Patrice de Maistre and Eric Woerth, at a time when it was very busy with the organization of the presidential campaign of Nicolas Sarkozy intervened [at times] that can corroborate Claire Thibout suspicion “but no evidence
clear conclusion on the facts”
So there is a strong suspicion Remittance of money Bettencourt funds without proof of delivery is fully achieved. It does not matter that the final destination of the amounts distributed is not known in the state. There is no evidence that Eric Woerth was aware of the illicit origin of that amount or amount. “
Eric Woerth was unaware of the state of Ms Bettencourt
Conclusion clear on the legal consequences.
If the court would retain the offense of abuse of weakness, it should be demonstrated by Eric Woerth knowledge of the particular vulnerability of Liliane Bettencourt [But] it is not reported he has encountered before January 2008 (…) Thus, it is not demonstrated that Eric Woerth was aware of the particular vulnerability of the state concerned. “
Judges also emphasize that it is not possible to withhold tax fraud laundering concealment.
Concealment, but of what?
They slip in passing that good qualification if crime there was, was “harboring illegal funding of a political party”. But a dismissal because of the prescription was made in 2013 in this very political aspect. “Therefore, consider such requalification is not legally possible.”
The end of a long journey
“An acquittal must be pronounced “conclude Roucou President Denis and Anne-Marie Pons Vollette and Sylvia assessors. “What we said is embodied in the work of justice, and in both cases,” said Jean-Yves Le Borgne, lawyer Eric Woerth, adding that “it is a long judicial process ending “for his client.