Jean Marie Le Pen, who is already facing several racial hatred convictions, is accused of illegally soliciting money from the European Parliament to pay her staff in France. The injury was estimated by investigators in 2018 at seven million euros. In addition to financial troubles, Le Pen was also accused of receiving huge sums from Russia in exchange for political favors.
In March of this year, Jean Marie Le Pen, an MEP from the 80’s, remained without parliamentary immunity for the fourth time, at the request of French justice, in connection with an investigation into fictitious employment. The founder of the far-right National Front has vehemently denied the charges and is going to support his position in court.
Jean Marie Le Pen has achieved notoriety, not exactly positive, since the launch of his party, in 1972, by nazi declarations, describing the gas chambers as “a historical detail of the Second World War.” Later, after some investigations, it was also revealed that the National Front received huge sums from Russia over several years. Jean-Marie Le Pen also secured Russian funding for the Cotelec micro-party set up under the umbrella of the National Front. Thus, in April 2014, the FN founder received a two million euro loan from a former KGB officer.
The favorable attitude towards Russia seems to be an inheritance in the Le Pen family. The founder of the National Front, Jean-Marie Le Pen, daughter of Marine Le Pen and niece Marion Marechal Le Pen have visited Moscow in recent years. Also, several Russian guests appeared at the 2014 National Front Congress.
In 2014, a group of hackers published thousands of emails and messages through which the Kremlin connected with the National Front. From the exchange of emails, it is clear that Marine Le Pen would have been financially rewarded for its support for Putin in the Ukraine crisis and the Crimean referendum.
More precisely, a few months after the FN leader publicly acknowledged the results of the plebiscite by which Russia annexed the peninsula, the French party obtained a loan of nine million euros from a Russian bank. In total, the National Front would have taken three such loans that, in fact, would have been “tranches” from a financing line with a total value of 40 million euros.
In May of this year, on a visit to Tallinn, Marine le Pen said:
“Russia does not finance us. It’s a lie. No European bank has agreed to give us a loan. I mean, we had to look for loans all over the world. Simply, the Czech-Russian bank has agreed to lend us. By the way, at a very disadvantageous percentage. I received a credit, but I paid it in full ”, said Le Pen at a press conference held in Tallinn.
Le Pen and her party are in favor of developing relations with Russia and agains extending sanctions. During his candidacy for president of France in 2017, Le Pen paid a visit to Moscow, where he met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russian deputies. In elections Marine Le Pen managed to reach the second round, in which he accumulated 34 percent of the votes and lost to Emmanuel Macron.
But the money in Russia does not flow only to the extremists in France. The Kremlin would fund such groups from the United Kingdom, Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria and Greece, according to an analysis published at the end of last year by the Center for Eurasian Strategic Information (CESI).