Press review
24 November 2023

Press review – Week of 20 November 2023

This week, the press review looks back at the criminal proceedings opened against Senator Joël Guerriau, former Socialist Party First Secretary and member of parliament Jean-Christophe Cambadélis and mayor of Cavalaire (Var) Philippe Leonelli, as well as the bill to adapt police custody to European Union law.

#Criminal law: French Senator Joël Guerriau, suspected of drugging a member of parliament, indicted and placed under judicial supervision

Joël Guerriau, Senator for Loire Atlantique, was indicted on Friday 17 November 2023 for administering to a person, without their knowledge, a substance likely to impair their mental faculties or control of their acts in order to commit rape or sexual assault against them. He is suspected of drugging Sandrine Josso, Member of Parliament for Loire Atlantique, without her consent. As this indictment is part of a flagrante delicto investigation, investigators did not need to request a waiver of parliamentary immunity. He was placed under judicial supervision. > Read article

Brussels imposes changes to police custody law

On Wednesday 15 November 2023, a European Union adaptation bill was tabled in the French Senate. This is the result of a reasoned opinion issued by the European Commission on 28 September in which it considered that the Directive of 22 October 2013 on the right of access to a lawyer in criminal proceedings had not been correctly transposed into French law. Therefore, the government proposes changes to police custody law aimed at (i) enabling the person concerned to notify any person of their choice of their placement in police custody, and no longer just a person with whom they usually live, a relative, their employer or, where applicable, the consular authorities of their country, and (ii) removing the possibility for the person concerned to be interviewed without their lawyer if they do not arrive within 2 hours, and only authorizing an interview without a lawyer in the event of an express waiver.> Read article

White collar crime: Embezzlement of office expenses: Cambadélis’ appeal is rejected and he will face a criminal trial  

On Tuesday 21 November 2023, the French Supreme Court (Cour de cassation) rejected an appeal filed by former French Socialist Party (PS) Prime Secretary and former member of parliament, Jean-Christophe Cambadélis, to quash the refusal to approve the guilty plea agreement (CRPC) he had signed with the French Financial National Prosecutor’s Office (PNF).  As part of this procedure, Mr. Cambadélis, charged with embezzling more than 110,000 euros in parliamentary allowances between 2015 and 2017, had accepted a six-month suspended prison and one-year suspended ineligibility sentence which was ultimately not approved by the president of the court on the grounds that it was not commensurate with the seriousness of the facts. The trial will take place on 24 June 2024 before the Paris Criminal Court. > Read article

#Arbitration: Practical tips when dealing with corruption allegations in arbitration

Navacelle contributes to the American Bar Association International Arbitration Committee’s Quarterly Newsletter (Q3 2023) by providing practical tips when dealing with corruption allegations in arbitration. > Read article

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