Nicolas Sarkozy’s best man investigated in arms-sale probe

French President’s associates implicated in kickback scheme

A financial scandal threatened to engulf French President Nicolas Sarkozy Thursday after two of his associates, including the best man at his wedding, were placed under formal investigation in an arms-trading probe. Nicolas Bazire, now the head of a luxury goods line, stands accused of handling illegal kickbacks tied to arms sales to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan in the 1990s. The money was allegedly used to fund the failed presidential campaign of former Prime Minister Édouard Balladur. Bazire was the best man at Sarkozy’s 2008 wedding to Carla Bruni. Thierry Gaubert, another close associate of Sarkozy’s, is under investigation for the same alleged crimes.

The Independent

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