Marine Le Pen Declines Police Interview Request In ‘Fake Job’ Inquiry
French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen has said no to a police interview in the investigation related to her alleged misuse of European Union (EU) parliamentary funds.
The move is not that surprising because Marine, like her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, the founder of the National Front party, also known as FN, is often associated to scandals and controversies.
Additionally, another reason why Mrs. Le Pen has opted not to talk to Nanterre authorities is because there will be no consequence for her refusal.
As a member of the European Parliamentary, the Presidential candidate has immunity and therefore can not be arrested nor charged.
However, it is an entirely different story for The National Front leader’s two assistants – Catherine Griset, a close friend who takes on the role of her cabinet director and Thierry Légier – who are also involved in this strange affair.
On Wednesday, the pair was interrogated by French authorities, and their respective homes were searched.
Griset and Légier are accused of receiving salaries as the assistants of a European member of parliament while they were employed by Mrs. Le Pen’s National Front party.
There is only one option to force Marine Le Pen into answering questions related to this case – the judges must petition to have her immunity revoked – a task that might take several months or even years to accomplish.
Le Pen, who is one of the top three candidates in the presidential election that will be held in April and May, stated that in the current political climate it is not the right time to deal with something so sensitive.
The controversial politician wants to handle the matter after the election. The 48-year-old mother of three shared: “I will not respond [to the summons] during the election campaign. During this period, there cannot be the neutrality or calm necessary for the justice system to function properly.”
Le Pen is accused of misusing over $321,000. The money was supposed to be spent in Brussels or Strasbourg, but according to investigators some of the funds were used to pay Griset and Légier.
This is not the first time Le Pen has found herself in a tug of war with the police.
In 2012, while French authorities were looking into misuse of funding into her campaign, she declined to speak to them. However, many of her staff members were fired due to the scandal.