President Nicolas Sarkozy himself has been drawn into the scandal surrounding his Labour Minister’s links with the richest woman in France.
It is claimed that Liliane Bettencourt gave Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign an illegal 150,000 euro cash donation in unmarked envelopes.
Eric Woerth, then treasurer of Sarkozy’s campaign, allegedly took delivery of the money, according to a reported interview with an ex-bookkeeper for the L’Oreal heiress. The minister’s spokesman denies this.
Damaging disclosures about the Woerth family’s connections with the billionaires have already piled pressure on Sarkozy’s government. His office is denying claims he received cash in person from Bettencourt and her late husband before becoming president.