Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy is in police custody in Paris over alleged funding of his 2007 presidential election campaign by late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.
The police are questioning the former president about Gaddafi’s financing of his campaign using illicit funds after five years since an investigation was opened into the allegation, reports BBC.
Close allies of Sarkozy have also been picked up by the police for questioning in the case whose claims were made by a French-Lebanese businessman, Ziad Takieddine, and some former Libyan officials.
Takieddine is reported to have told the French news website Mediapart in 2016 that in 2006-2007 he had handed over three suitcases stuffed with a total €5m ($6.2m) to Mr Sarkozy and Claude Guéant, who was his chief of staff and managing his campaign at the time.
They denied any wrongdoing and Guéant claimed the money came from the sale of two paintings despite a report by French daily Le Monde which claimed Bashir Saleh, the manager of Libya’s funds at the time had confirmed that Gaddafi financed Sarkozy.
Sarkozy was detained in 2014 in a separate investigation into alleged abuse of campaign funds which he is accused of overshooting the expenditure.