Paris : The head of the International Monetary Fund faced a fourth round of questioning over a multi-million-euro corruption case relating to her time as French finance minister in 2008, reports AFP.
Christine Lagarde made no comment to reporters as she entered the Court of Justice of the Republic, a special court that probes cases of ministerial misconduct, but has previously denied any wrongdoing. The case relates to her handling of a 400-million-euro ($527-million) state payout to disgraced French tycoon Bernard Tapie in 2008.
The payout was connected to a dispute between the businessman and partly state-owned bank Credit Lyonnais over his 1993 sale of sportswear group Adidas. Tapie claimed Credit Lyonnais had defrauded him by intentionally undervaluing Adidas at the time of the sale and that the state, as the bank’s principal shareholder, should compensate him. Lagarde referred the dispute to a three-member arbitration panel that ruled in favour of Tapie, who is suspected of receiving favourable treatment in return for supporting ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy in the 2007 election. The IMF chief, one of the world’s most powerful women, said in March after she faced a third grilling that she had “always acted in the interest of the country and in accordance with the law.”