The investigation into Bruno Le Maire’s microparty dismissed “for lack of infringement”

The investigation opened into suspicions of illegal donations to the microparty of the Minister of the Economy, Bruno Le Maire, during the campaign for the right-wing primary in 2016 was closed without further action "for lack of offense", indicated Monday the Paris prosecutor's office, confirming information from the JDD

The investigation into Bruno Le Maire’s microparty dismissed “for lack of infringement”

The investigation opened into suspicions of illegal donations to the microparty of the Minister of the Economy, Bruno Le Maire, during the campaign for the right-wing primary in 2016 was closed without further action "for lack of offense", indicated Monday the Paris prosecutor's office, confirming information from the JDD.

The investigation by the Brigade for the Repression of Economic Delinquency (BRDE), opened after a report from the National Commission for Campaign Accounts and Political Financing (CNCCFP), established that the abandonment of debts by the minister's microparty, " With BLM,” were not fraudulent, according to the prosecution.

“These were in reality services whose quality, even the existence, had been contested, and for which the debts initially declared, unclaimed, had ended up being prescribed,” he clarified. “We are pleased that the relevant elements communicated have convinced the prosecution to close this case,” Cyril Bonan, lawyer for Bruno Le Maire, responded to Agence France-Presse. The Ministry of the Economy did not wish to comment.

During the right-wing primary in 2016, Mr. Le Maire came in fifth place with only 2.4% of the vote. His microparty “With BLM”, put on hold after the electoral deadlines, had collected two million euros and then struggled to pay off its debts.

Unpaid service provider invoices in the viewfinder

The investigations were launched on June 2 for “participation in the financing of a political party by a legal entity through donations or provision of advantages at a price lower than those usually practiced” and for “acceptance by the political party of these same advantages ".

The minister, through his entourage, rejected the accusations, saying he was “surprised” that the CNCCFP took legal action when it had “validated the accounts of the BLM association without reservation by mail dated November 21, 2022 ". The accounts “do not reveal any incomplete scope or obvious inconsistency”, assured Bruno Le Maire’s entourage.

Unpaid service provider invoices were in the investigators' sights. According to Mediapart, out of “more than ten” unpaid service providers, the largest canceled debts come from two political communications specialists: Experian (with an unpaid invoice of 24,990 euros) and Catch Digital Strategy (9,000 euros ). Questioned by the CNCCFP, in observations available online, the microparty had notably justified these canceled debts by exceeding the “legal limitation period” of five years.