Former top French minister questioned over Ghadaffi funds

(AGI) Paris, Mar 6 - Police are questioning former FrenchInterior Minister Claude Gueant, Nicolas Sarkozy's right-handman for 10 years. He is accused of receiving 500,000 euros fromformer Libyan leader Muammar Ghadaffi to fund the former Frenchpresident's electoral campaign. He claimed that the money camefrom the sale of two 17th-century Flemish paintings to aMalaysian lawyer, but this is being treated as a cover-up forthe transfer of slush funds. Mr Gueant's staff confirmednewspaper Le Figaro's report that he was under interrogation,but said he had always been available to magistrates and thepolice and

(AGI) Paris, Mar 6 - Police are questioning former FrenchInterior Minister Claude Gueant, Nicolas Sarkozy's right-handman for 10 years. He is accused of receiving 500,000 euros fromformer Libyan leader Muammar Ghadaffi to fund the former Frenchpresident's electoral campaign. He claimed that the money camefrom the sale of two 17th-century Flemish paintings to aMalaysian lawyer, but this is being treated as a cover-up forthe transfer of slush funds. Mr Gueant's staff confirmednewspaper Le Figaro's report that he was under interrogation,but said he had always been available to magistrates and thepolice and should not have been treated like a dangerouscriminal. They also accused magistrates of taking out thecustody order for "political ends", to damage Nicolas Sarkozy'simage in the run-up to the Mar. 22 and 29 elections. Mediarumours Col. Ghaddafi had bankrolled Mr Sarkozy surfaced duringthe 2012 presidential elections, which were won by FrancoisHollande. Mr. Sarkozy has always maintained that the documentspublished exclusively by the French online investigativejournal Mediapart were false. (AGI). .