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Former French leader Chirac to face fresh graft charges

New graft charges have been brought against former French President Jacques Chirac relating to salaries for allies being paid out of public funds.

Former French President Jacques Chirac

Chirac now faces two sets of charges connected with the alleged salaries

Former French President Jacques Chirac will stand trial on a second set of corruption charges dating back to the 1990s, according to a judiciary official.

The anonymous official said the charges were related to Chirac's alleged use of public funds to pay salaries to political allies while he was mayor of Paris from 1977 to 1995.

The 77-year-old denies having any knowledge of corrupt payments.

Further charges

In September, the Paris city council agreed to accept over 2 million euros ($2.7 million) from Chirac in exchange for dropping a civil suit against him in connection with the graft allegations.

Chirac will face the new charges at the same time as he deals with another case on related charges linked to the alleged salaries, which will go to trial in a Paris court in April next year.

As president from 1995 to 2007, he was immune from prosecution. Despite the court cases, Chirac remains one of France's most popular political leaders.

Author: Darren Mara (AP, AFP)
Editor: Martin Kuebler

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