Press review
3 February 2023

Press review – Week of 30 January 2023

This week's press review focuses on the conviction of Urgo Laboratories, the placement in police custody of the President of the French Rugby Federation for aggravated tax fraud and the new bill to organize and oversee the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. It also presents the publication by the National Financial Prosecutor's Office of the summary of its activity for the year 2022 and the new tools used by the tax administration to identify inconsistencies in tax returns. Finally, on the international level, it details the investigation opened in Brazil for acts of genocide committed against the Yanomami indigenous people.


Bernard Laporte placed in police custody for several hours for “aggravated tax fraud

On Tuesday 24 January 2023, the president of the French Rugby Federation (FFR) Bernard Laporte was placed in police custody as part of an investigation initiated by the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office for “aggravated tax fraud laundering“. The facts concern a donation made in 2010 by Bernard Laporte to one of his friends, a former rugby player, who would not have declared it to the tax authorities. The defense lawyers point out that the police custody occurred at the same time as the beginning of the vote organized for the nomination of the new FFR president. They also plan to bring a case before the court for gross negligence on the part of the judicial administration because of the repeated violation of the secrets of the investigation. > Read article


A law to regulate the Olympic Games

At the end of January 2023, the debates on the bill for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games began. This project plans to legalize the use of algorithmic video surveillance (VSA) devices in order to secure the various events organized during this major event. The project also proposes the creation of two new offences in the French penal code: (i) fraudulent entry into a sports arena, either as a group or as a repeat offender, and (ii) unauthorized entry into or presence on the field of play, with a mandatory stadium ban as the main penalty. > Read article


In Brazil, an investigation opened for the “genocide” of the Yanomami indigenous people

An investigation for “genocide” has been opened by the Brazilian police following the publication of official data reporting the death of around 100 children under the age of five in the Yanomani indigenous territory in 2022. The first elements of the investigation, targeting public agents and health sector officials in the indigenous territory, seem to indicate that the population was denied food and health assistance. In addition to possible genocide, the investigation also includes allegations of environmental crimes and misappropriation of public resources.> Read article


Urgo laboratories heavily sanctioned for offering gifts to pharmacists

Urgo laboratories have been fined 1,125,000 euros, including 625,000 euros suspended, for commercial practices considered irregular between 2015 and 2021. They were accused of having set up a system consisting in the delivery of valuable or leisure objects to certain pharmacists, in exchange for the abandonment of commercial discounts that could be granted to their pharmacies. > Read article


PNF’s Annual summary for the year 2022

The National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF) has released its key figures for the year 2022. The summary published online shows an increase of more than 10% in the number of ongoing proceedings and the signing of six judicial agreements of public interest (CJIP) during the year 2022. The PNF has also announced, through the publication of new guidelines, the three objectives defined for the CJIP, including (i) a reinforcement of the adherence of the stakeholders to the system, (ii) a reinforcement of the effectiveness of the penal response to the observed breaches and, (iii) a reinforcement of its own predictability in order to encourage and develop the self-disclosure of companies. > Read article


What new tools have been put in place against tax evaders?

The General Directorate of Public Finance can now detect, thanks to algorithms, inconsistencies in certain tax returns, and this is particularly through the examination of certain profiles present on social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, Airbnb or Leboncoin. Since 2021, artificial intelligence can prove that an individual really lives in France and not abroad. Finally, the tax authorities have software that allows them to identify links between companies and to control those that appear suspicious.> Read article


Le monde du droit announces the arrival of Roxane Castro as Counsel

Navacelle strengthens its regulatory litigation practice with the arrival of Roxane Castro. > Read press release 

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