'Upset' Mitterrand son avoids tax evasion trial

15th September 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Sept 15 (AFP) - The tax evasion trial of late French president Francois Mitterrand's eldest son Jean-Christophe on Wednesday was pushed back to November 2 after the defendant failed to appear in court.

PARIS, Sept 15 (AFP) - The tax evasion trial of late French president Francois Mitterrand's eldest son Jean-Christophe on Wednesday was pushed back to November 2 after the defendant failed to appear in court.  

"The court orders the defendant to appear, deeming his presence necessary," said presiding judge Jean-Louis Kantor.  

Mitterrand's lawyer Olivier Schnerb explained his client's absence by saying he was "extremely upset" and that his doctor had recommended 10 days of rest.  

The 58-year-old Mitterrand, who once served as his father's advisor on African affairs, is accused of failing to declare up to EUR 600,000 (USD 730,900) in consultancy fees.  

The alleged undeclared income came from work he did for French businessman Pierre Falcone, the central figure in a scandal involving the illegal sale of arms to Angola in 1993-94 during the country's 27-year civil war.  

Mitterrand could face up to five years in prison and a EUR 75,000 fine if convicted on the tax evasion charges.  

In December 2000, Mitterrand was placed under formal investigation for complicity in illegal arms trading in connection with the arms-to-Angola scandal.

 

© AFP

 

Subject: French News

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