French FN founder Le Pen's home searched on tax fraud suspicions: legal sources

4th November 2015, Comments 0 comments

French police searched the manor house of far-right National Front (FN) founder Jean-Marie Le Pen on Wednesday as part of investigations into suspected tax fraud, legal sources told AFP.

The investigation targeting the 87-year-old founder of the FN, who was expelled from the party earlier this year, was opened by financial prosecutors in June over suspicions he had stashed money abroad and failed to declare property, a judicial source said.

Anti-corruption investigators are looking into an account in the British Virgin Islands which is linked to an account in Geneva operated by Le Pen's personal assistant, said a source close to the probe.

The Virgin Islands account was closed last year and the funds moved to a bank in the Bahamas, the source added.

French media company Mediapart reported the investigation into the Geneva trust earlier this year, saying it contained at least 2.2 million euros ($2.4 million), most of it in gold bullion and coins.

Le Pen denied the trust's existence, saying: "I deny it. It's not because Mediapart says something that it becomes an evangelical truth."

© 2015 AFP

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