• By The Financial District

DEFENSE DEMANDS ACQUITTAL OF EX-FRENCH PRESIDENT

As his trial on allegedly inflated election campaign expenses ended on Tuesday, the defense demanded an acquittal for French ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy, Christian Boehmer reported for Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa).

The 66-year-old had "committed no crime," lawyer Gesche Le Fur said, the Agence France-Presse (AFP) news agency reported.


"He did not sign an estimate, he did not sign an invoice," the lawyer said. The hearings took several weeks; Sarkozy did not appear in court for the finale. The verdict is to be announced on September 30.


All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

Last week, the prosecution had demanded a prison sentence of one year. Of this, six months are to be suspended. In addition, the former president would pay a fine of 3,750 euros ($4,463).


The conservative governed from 2007 to 2012. Sarkozy denied the accusations in court. In the 2012 election campaign, he said, they had not gone overboard.


Sarko, as he is often called in France, is alleged to have illegally financed the ultimately failed campaign for his re-election, according to the indictment. Thirteen other defendants are facing charges of fraud or aiding and abetting.


The prosecution had demanded prison sentences for them ranging from 18 months to four years, suspended in whole or in part. The upper limit allowed for campaign spending at the time was 22.5 million euros. At least 42.8 million euros is said to have been spent by Sarkozy's team.



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