end of appeal trial, decision on October 6 for Tapie

The Paris Court of Appeal put its decision under advisement on October 6, the last day of the trial on Wednesday in the controversial 2008 arbitration case, which awarded € 403 million to Bernard Tapie in his dispute with Credit Lyonnais.

This trial, which began in October, was interrupted for several months and then resumed on May 10, ended without the businessman, suffering from cancer and whose state of health deteriorated again at the end of May.

The general prosecutor’s office had requested on June 2 five years in prison suspended against him for complicity in fraud and embezzlement of public funds. His lawyers did not plead, Bernard Tapie having refused to be represented in his absence after the rejection of a new request to postpone the trial.

The lawyers of the five other defendants asked the court to confirm the release pronounced at first instance two years earlier, arguing that there was “absolutely nothing fraudulent” in the arbitration organized in 2007-2008.

In this case, Bernard Tapie is suspected of having, with accomplices, “manipulated” this private settlement procedure aimed at settling his old dispute with Crédit Lyonnais, a former public bank. The arbitration award has since been overturned in civil matters in 2015 for “fraud”.

The defense of the boss of Orange, Stéphane Richard, on Wednesday refuted the accusations of “concealment” and “deception” concerning the one who was then chief of staff of the Minister of the Economy Christine Lagarde.

The CEO of the operator, absent from some hearings because of the blackout which recently affected emergency numbers, spoke at length, speaking of this file as a “cross” that he has been wearing since 2013 “.

The public prosecutor asked for a three-year sentence, one of which was firm, a 100,000 euros fine and a five-year ban on his civil rights.

The day before, the advice of Maurice Lantourne, former lawyer of Bernard Tapie, affirmed that the latter had at the time no “privileged” link with Pierre Estoup, one of the three arbitrators who had rendered the award.

For the prosecution, which required against the two men three years suspended sentence and 300,000 euros fine, Mr. Estoup was committed to the cause of Mr. Tapie: no evidence, “we fabricated a scam” non-existent, s’ the defense of the high magistrate is insurgent.

The advice of the two former managers of the entities responsible for managing the liabilities of Crédit Lyonnais also pleaded for release.

The prosecution asked for three months suspended sentence and 10,000 euros fine for Bernard Scemama; three years including two closed as well as 100,000 euros fine for Jean-François Rocchi, a “straight man, loyal” who has shown “no opacity” or “lie”, according to his lawyer.

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