The Minister of Justice, Éric Dupond-Moretti is sent back to trial: he is accused of conflicts of interest. His lawyers have announced that they are appealing in cassation.
A first for a Keeper of the Seals in office: the Court of Justice of the Republic (CJR) on Monday ordered a trial against Éric Dupond-Moretti, accused of having taken advantage of his function to settle scores with magistrates to whom he s was opposed when he was a lawyer, his advice announced on Monday.
The Minister of Justice, who was traveling to Guyana over the weekend, was represented Monday morning by his lawyers before the commission of instruction of the CJR, made up of three magistrates.
As unfortunately we expected, it is a judgment of dismissal which was rendered by the commission of the instruction (note: from the CJR). We immediately lodged an appeal in cassation against this ruling. This stop no longer exists “, announced Me Christophe Ingrain and Rémi Lorrain at the exit of the CJR, in Paris, in the absence of Éric Dupond-Moretti.
” It is now up to the plenary assembly of the Court of Cassation to take up this file and to rule in particular on the numerous irregularities which have marred this file for two years, in the forefront of which is the atypical position since unfair and biased of the prosecutor General at the Court of Cassation “, François Molins, added Me Rémi Lorrain.
Arrived at nine o’clock at the CJR, whose court formation alone is empowered to try members of the government for crimes or misdemeanors committed in the exercise of their mandate, the two lawyers came out of it thirty minutes later, after be made to mean dismissal for ” illegal taking of interests by Eric Dupond-Moretti.
The former tenor of the bar, appointed head of the Chancellery in the summer of 2020 and reappointed to this post after the re-election in May of Emmanuel Macron, was indicted by the CJR for illegal taking of interest in July 2021.
For the minister himself, whose relations with the judiciary are notoriously difficult, the decision is no mystery: he said on Tuesday that he had “virtual assurance” of being fired.
I have always said that I got my legitimacy from the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister and from them alone “, he had also anticipated Tuesday. His dismissal will not fail to pose once again the question of the maintenance of the government of the former criminal lawyer.
Éric Dupond-Moretti is accused of having taken advantage of his position, once at the head of the Ministry of Justice, to settle accounts with magistrates with whom he had had trouble when he was a lawyer, which he dispute.
Complaints from magistrates’ unions and the anticorruption association Anticor, denouncing two situations of conflict of interest since his arrival at the Chancellery, had given rise to the opening of a judicial investigation in January 2021. The first file concerns the administrative investigation he ordered in September 2020 against three magistrates of the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF).
They had had his detailed telephone bills (“fadettes”) go through when Mr. Dupond-Moretti was still a star at the bar in order to flush out a possible mole who would have informed Nicolas Sarkozy that he was being wiretapped in the corruption case. known as “Paul Bismuth”.
A PNF deputy prosecutor, Patrice Amar, and his ex-boss, Eliane Houlette, appeared in September before the Superior Council of the Judiciary (CSM), which is due to render its decision on October 19. No sanction was required against them. The third magistrate implicated, Ulrika Delaunay-Weiss, was cleared before any hearing before the CSM.
In the second case, the Keeper of the Seals is accused of having initiated administrative proceedings against a former investigating judge seconded to Monaco, Edouard Levrault, who had indicted one of his ex-clients. Éric Dupond-Moretti had criticized his “cowboy” methods.
The CSM decided on September 15 not to sanction Mr. Levrault, considering that ” no disciplinary breach can be attributed to him “. A decision that sounded like a disavowal of the minister. Throughout the investigation, Éric Dupond-Moretti repeated that he had only done ” follow the recommendations of his administration “. An argument that did not convince the public prosecutor: in May he requested a trial against the minister.