IMF Chief Lagarde Under Investigation in France
Suspected of negligence in French corruption probe
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 27, 2014 7:01 AM CDT
International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde speaks at the IMF in Washington, Wednesday, July 2, 2014.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

(Newser) – Christine Lagarde, the chief of the International Monetary Fund, was placed under official investigation today for negligence in a French corruption probe that dates back to her days as France's finance minister. In a statement after a fourth round of questioning before magistrates, Lagarde said she would return to her work in Washington later in the day and said the decision was "without basis." She and her former chief of staff face questions about their role in a $531 million payment to businessman Bernard Tapie.

The payment was made in arbitration over a dispute with state-owned bank Credit Lyonnais over the botched sale of Adidas. Critics have said the deal was too generous and was symptomatic of the cozy relationship between money and power in France. "After three years of proceedings, dozens of hours of questioning, the court found from the evidence that I committed no offense, and the only allegation is that I was not sufficiently vigilant," Lagarde said in her statement. Under French law, the official investigation is equivalent to preliminary charges, meaning there is reason to suspect an infraction. Investigating judges can later drop a case or issue formal charges and send it to trial.

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Aug 27, 2014 5:48 PM CDT
The Orange One would vanish in a prison-style orange jumpsuit. Better still........sentence the I'M a Fraud to 278 years in solitary in a stand-up tanning booth.............. set to "Fukishima FVCK-IT'S-HOT" level. Fake Tan her into oblivion. No parole.
Aug 27, 2014 4:02 PM CDT
IMF. Idiot Mutha F....?
Aug 27, 2014 1:57 PM CDT
Oh, yes, "not sufficiently vigilant". Sounds just like the SEC, doesn't it? If you have any money at all, stash it in a coffee can or put it under your mattress. One percenters snort up everyone's loose change like it's primo cocaine.