Sarkozy will be tried for the alleged Libyan financing of his 2007 campaign

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Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy will stand trial for corruption in early 2025 in Paris on corruption and illegal financing charges related to the alleged Libyan financing of his successful 2007 presidential bid, the national financial prosecutor's office said on Friday.

The former president, who has already been implicated in other corruption cases, must appear before the criminal court along with 12 other people accused of passive corruption, criminal association, illegal financing of the electoral campaign and concealment of embezzlement of Libyan public funds.

The initial hearing is scheduled for March 7, 2024, the prosecution said, and the trial itself is scheduled for January 6, 2025, and April 10, 2025. Sarkozy has always denied the allegations.

The 12 other people charged in the case include heavyweights including Sarkozy's former right-hand man Claude Gueant, his then campaign finance chief Eric Woerth and former interior minister Brice Hortefeux.

In May, the financial prosecutor's office demanded that Sarkozy be brought to trial, alleging charges against him for "concealing the laundering of public funds, passive corruption, illegal financing of electoral campaigns and criminal conspiracy to commit an offense punishable by 10 years in prison". Now, the investigating judges, who had the last word, have given the go-ahead to the trial.

Sarkozy is facing legal trouble on multiple fronts. In May, he lost his appeal against a 2021 conviction for corruption and influence peddling at the Paris Court of Appeal, prompting his legal team to promise a challenge before France's highest court.

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