A senior magistrate of the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office accused in 2019 his then boss, Eliane Houlette, of having indirectly allowed Nicolas Sarkozy and his lawyer to know about wiretapping in 2014, according to a letter to his hierarchy revealed by Le Point and consulted Sunday by AFP.
These accusations, deemed “unfounded” by the hierarchical superior, are revealed at the approach of the deliberation, Monday, in the trial of the former president: an accusation of influence peddling and corruption born of these controversial eavesdropping.
The accusation against Ms. Houlette, first leader of the PNF (2014-2019), came from the first deputy prosecutor at the PNF, Patrice Amar. He was in charge of monitoring Mr. Sarkozy’s case as well as the investigation to identify the possible mole that warned the former president and Me Thierry Herzog in February 2014.
In January 2019, when Ms. Houlette removed her from these cases, Mr. Amar listed her grievances against her with Attorney General Catherine Champrenault. But the latter had deemed the allegations “unfounded in the state” and transferred him to Ms Houlette’s departure the following summer.
Among other reproaches – “conflicts of interest”, “harassment”, “systematic obstruction”, … – Mr. Amar reported how he had arrived at the conviction that Ms. Houlette had, by “incompetence”, “panic” and ” inexperience “, allowed the former president to discover the wiretapping of his line hidden in the name of” Paul Bismuth “.
According to Mr. Amar, Ms. Houlette could have passed on information to her daughter, an intern at a law firm, who could have passed it on to her boss. And the latter could have, through his partner and another tenor of the bar, warn Me Herzog.
“This is, of course, only a supposition, even if I am convinced that it is highly probable and the most probable”, wrote the magistrate.
“The investigation against his leader is paranoid! I was dismayed to learn that Mr. Amar, after having been moved for a while, is now reassigned to the PNF”, reacted to AFP the lawyer by Mme Houlette, Me Jean-Pierre Versini-Campinchi.
“Patrice Amar explained it in detail before the General Inspectorate of Justice (IGJ) during his hearings”, specify in a statement Mes Marie Lhéritier and François Saint-Pierre, who defend Mr. Amar and his colleague, targeted by an administrative inquiry.
“The aim of the Point was obviously to put pressure on the court a few days before the delivery of its judgment”, they added, denouncing a “deplorable process”.
The unsuccessful efforts to identify “the mole” caused a stir during the summer among lawyers and on the right, when Le Point revealed that during this investigation had been peeled the detailed telephone records (“fadettes”) of tenors of the bar.
One of them, Eric Dupond-Moretti, had denounced “methods of barbouzes” and lodged a complaint, withdrawn during his appointment as Minister of Justice.
The Minister of Justice then ordered the IGJ investigation targeting Mr. Amar, one of his colleagues and Ms. Houlette.
This decision is the subject of a judicial inquiry targeting the minister for “illegal taking of interests”.
Regarding the three magistrates, a decision by Prime Minister Jean Castex on possible sanctions is expected soon.