Ex-French minister Cahuzac probed for alleged tax fraud

Jerome Cahuzac. Photo: March 2013 Jerome Cahuzac gained a reputation as a vocal crusader against overseas tax havens

Related Stories

Former French Budget Minister Jerome Cahuzac has been placed under formal investigation over alleged tax fraud, his lawyer has said.

It comes as Mr Cahuzac admitted to having had a foreign bank account.

The ex-minister had until now denied a report by investigative website Mediapart that he kept an undeclared Swiss bank account until 2010.

Mr Cahuzac - who gained a reputation as a vocal crusader against the use of overseas tax havens - quit in March.

'Spiral of lies'

Mr Cahuzac said he made the admission about the bank account during a meeting with investigating magistrates on Tuesday.

In a statement, he said he had about 600,000 euros (£509,000; $770,000) in the account.

He also asked for forgiveness from French President Francois Hollande and his former government colleagues.

"I was caught in a spiral of lies and lost my way. I am devastated by guilt," the statement said, quoted by the AFP news agency.

"It was an unspeakable mistake to think that I could avoid confronting a past that I wanted to consider behind me. I will now face this reality with all transparency," the statement said.

Mr Cahuzac had earlier insisted that he had done nothing wrong. He was a plastic surgeon before entering politics.

Correspondents say the scandal is embarrassing for the French Socialist government which has made fighting tax evasion a priority, as it tries to cut public debt.

More on This Story

Related Stories

More Europe stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • French luxury Tea House, Mariage Freres display of tea pots Tea for tu

    France falls back in love with tea - but don't expect a British cuppa


  • Woman in swimming pool Green stuff

    The element that makes a familiar smell when mixed with urine


  • People take part in an egg-cracking contest in the village of Mokrin, 120km (75 miles) north of Belgrade, Serbia on 20 April 2014In pictures

    Images from around the world as Christians mark Easter Sunday


  • Female model's bottom in leopard skin trousers as she walks up the catwalkBum deal

    Why budget buttock ops can be bad for your health


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • ITChild's play

    It's never been easier for small businesses to get their message out to the world

Programmes

  • An aerial shot shows the Olympic Stadium, which is closed for repair works on its roof, in Rio de Janeiro March 28, 2014.Extra Time Watch

    Will Rio be ready in time to host the Olympics in 2016? The IOC president gives his verdict

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.