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Former French leader to testify in polling fraud case

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy will have to testify in court in a fraud case. His former aides are accused of misuse of public funds during public opinion polls. France24 news channel reports.

A French court ordered Sarkozy to appear in court on November 2. The judge noted that Sarkozy’s testimony was «necessary to determine the truth».

The accused are five of Sarkozy’s former aides. They were charged with the misuse of public money over the awarding of polling contracts worth a combined 7,5 million euros.

The accused include former head of the presidential administration Claude Guehan, former cabinet secretary Emmanuelle Mignon and former adviser Patrick Buisson.

The ex-president said that he would not appear in court as a witness. Sarkozy noted his presidential immunity in this case.

If the former head of state does not appear in court, the police will bring him by force.

In late September, Sarkozy was handed a one-year prison sentence by a court after being found guilty of illegal campaign financing in 2012. He is allowed to serve his sentence at home under electronic supervision

Nicolas Sarkozy served as president of France from 2007 to 2012.