ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Corruption: un juge va enquêter sur le système Dassault à Corbeil-Essonnes
Translated Sunday 31 March 2013, by
Paris Prosecutor opens a criminal investigation into vote buying, corruption, money laundering and misuse of corporate assets in the Corbeil (Essonne) 2008—2010 municipal election campaigns, won by Senator Serge Dassault and his right arm Jean-Pierre Bechter, both members of the UMP.
Suspected illegal electoral practices were the subject of a preliminary investigation conducted since 2010 by the interregional specialized jurisdiction (juridictions inter-régionales spécialisées [JIRS]) in Paris, following a report by the anti-fraud agency Tracfin. In addition, an investigation into telephone call harassment was launched after complaints from Dassault’s children, and a preliminary investigation for extortion by organized gangs is also underway.
The Prosecutor’s decision comes after Bruno Piriou asked in a statement issued on 27 February "that justice be done in Corbeil." The Communist Councillor and opponent of Serge Dassault and Jean-Pierre Brechter during the last elections, went on to deplore "the staggering sums of money involved in ensuring their re-election" and "the poisonous atmosphere leading up to the bloody revenge attacks of the last few days. "
A reminder of the facts:
"We need justice to be done so that republican values can be put to work again in this town. Corruption is rampant here" according to Bruno Piriou who welcomed the opening of the judicial enquiry on Friday as "good news".
Socialist MP Carlos da Silva, former deputy to Manuel Valls, has meanwhile called upon Dassault and Bechter to "immediately assume the consequences" of the judicial inquiry "so as not to further damage Corbeil."
"I was elected with a lead of 800. I do not see how we could have bought 800 votes," Jean-Pierre Bechter told AFP.