Historic, the trial of Éric Dupond-Moretti before the Court of Justice of the Republic (CJR) restarts this Monday the only jurisdiction authorized to judge members of the government. For the first time, a serving minister will face the fifteen judges who make up the CJR. On the dock for illegal taking of interests, the Minister of Justice risks five years of imprisonment and a fine of 500,000 euros as well as a sentence of ineligibility and prohibition from holding public office.
Created in July 1993 to replace the High Court of Justice, the Court of Justice of the Republic opened its first trial in 1999, when it had to judge three former ministers involved in the contaminated blood affair. In all, eight ministers and two secretaries of state came before the special jurisdiction.
On February 9, 1999, three members of the government marked the history of the Fifth Republic, by inaugurating the first trial of the Court of Justice of the Republic. In office during the contaminated blood affair, former Prime Minister Laurent Fabius (1984-1986), former Minister of Social Affairs Georgina Dufoix and Edmond Hervé, then Secretary of State for Health, appeared before the jurisdiction. Accused of inaction in the 1980s when hundreds of people received blood transfusions contaminated with the AIDS virus, the three politicians are being prosecuted for homicide and involuntary injuries. On March 9, 1999, Laurent Fabius and his former Minister of Social Affairs were acquitted while Edmond Hervé was found guilty of “failure to fulfill an obligation of security or prudence” but was exempted from punishment. Controversial, the decision aroused numerous criticisms against the CJR, which became the symbol of a justice complacent towards those in power.
The matter seems trivial. However, she took Ségolène Royal before the judges of the Court of Justice of the Republic in 1999. Two years earlier, the socialist was accused of defamation by two teachers from the Thiers high school in Marseille in the context of a hazing case. Then Minister of School Education, she pointed out the “complicity of adults” in the hazing of students in preparatory classes for the veterinary school competition, without expressly naming the teachers involved. This did not prevent those concerned from suing him for defamation. Ségolène Royal was finally acquitted in May 2000, the Court having considered that she had provided “perfect and complete proof” of her accusation.
After a ten-year investigation, the Secretary of State for Disabled People under François Mitterrand was finally found guilty of fraud to the detriment of the State in July 2004. Thanks to a financial arrangement, Michel Gillibert managed to divert, between 1988 and 1993, 8.5 million francs in public subsidies via associations created ad hoc. By sentencing the former Secretary of State to three years' suspended imprisonment and a fine of 20,000 euros, the CJR imposes a sentence on an accused for the first time. The former businessman was also deprived of his right to vote for a period of five years as well as his eligibility.
April 30, 2010. At the age of 83, Jacques Chirac's emblematic Minister of the Interior, Charles Pasqua (1993-1995), is sentenced to a one-year suspended prison sentence for embezzlement. Found guilty in only one of the three embezzlement cases for which he was prosecuted, the former top cop in France received a sentence for complicity in misuse of corporate assets and complicity in receiving stolen property in the Sofremi contracts affair, a private equity company. police equipment linked to the Interior. Charles Pasqua is released for the affairs of the Annemasse casino and the GEC-Alsthom group.
Seventeen years after the trial of Edmond Hervé, the Court of Justice of the Republic once again pronounces the guilt of an accused without dispensing with punishment. This time, it is the former Minister of the Economy Christine Lagarde (2007-2011) who is accused of her “negligence” in the arbitration between Bernard Tapie and Crédit Lyonnais in 2007. The current president of the European Central Bank was criticized for having given its agreement in 2007 to the procedure between Bernard Tapie and Crédit Lyonnais, which had allowed the businessman to pocket 403 million euros of public money .
In 2019, four before Éric-Dupond-Moretti, Jean-Jacques Urvoas became the first Minister of Justice to appear before the Court of Justice of the Republic. Briefly Minister of Justice between 2016 and 2017, the socialist was sentenced in 2019 to one month of suspended imprisonment and a fine of 5,000 euros for “violation of professional secrecy”. The former tenant of Place Vendôme was found guilty of having shared in 2017 with Thierry Solère, then member of the Les Républicains, information on an investigation for tax fraud and influence peddling therefore he was the subject.
Founder of the Court of Justice of the Republic in 1993, the former Prime Minister of the RPR (1993-1995) paid the price twenty-eight years later. Alongside François Léotard, his Minister of Defense, Édouard Balladur was implicated for his participation in a secret financing system serving the 1995 presidential campaign. Accused of “complicity in the abuse of corporate assets” and of “concealment”, he was finally released. His former colleague, also accused of “complicity in misuse of corporate assets”, was sentenced to a two-year suspended prison sentence and a fine of 100,000 euros.