Arab Today, arab today french journalists charged with bid to blackmail
Last Updated : GMT 09:06:14
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

To prevent a book about Morocco king

French journalists charged with bid to blackmail

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today French journalists charged with bid to blackmail

Moroccan man looks at the cover of a daily newspaper
Paris - Arab Today

Two French investigative journalists were charged with blackmail for demanding two million euros ($2.2 million) from the king of Morocco not to bring out a book purportedly containing damaging revelations about the monarch, legal sources said Saturday.

Eric Laurent and Catherine Graciet were working on a book about King Mohammed VI, which is due for release early next year.

They were arrested in Paris on Thursday after a meeting with a Moroccan official at which they allegedly accepted payments of 40,000 euros ($45,000) each, a source close to the French investigation told AFP.

The Moroccan government claims that was the payment was the first instalment of a total of two million euros demanded by the authors in exchange for not bringing out their book.

The French judicial source said the journalists had been charged with blackmail and extortion.

They were released on bail, but are restricted from talking to each other or parties involved in the case.

Eric Dupond-Moretti, a lawyer for the Moroccan government, told France's RTL radio that 68-year-old Laurent contacted the royal palace in July, saying he was writing a book about Mohammed VI.

The journalist allegedly demanded three million euros initially, but reduced the figure after further negotiations.

However, by then the monarch had filed a case with Paris prosecutors and later meetings with the journalists were bugged.

"Meetings were filmed and recorded between the journalists and the king's representatives... under the supervision of the police," said Dupond-Moretti on Thursday.

"They were caught red-handed."

He also said a contract had been signed by the journalists, acknowledging receipt of the 80,000-euro down-payment and promising to "not write anything about the king of Morocco".

Through his lawyer William Bourdon, Laurent on Saturday denied any wrongdoing.

According to the lawyer, Laurent said he had been seeking a "financial deal" with Morocco about the book, but not through blackmail. He denounced what he called a "trap" and a "manipulation" by Rabat, saying he would demand that the case be dismissed.

Graciet's lawyer, Eric Moutet, also confirmed the existence of a "financial deal" but that his client had been caught in a "trap".

"The Moroccan kingdom has a clear axe to grind with Catherine Graciet," said Moutet, adding that the context of the accusations was "very troubling".

The pair are known in Morocco, having published a highly critical book on Mohammed VI in 2012 entitled "The predator king". When Spain's El Pais newspaper printed excerpts from the book, the edition was banned in Morocco.

Their publisher, Editions du Seuil, confirmed that the two writers were working on another book slated for publication "in January/February".

The affair threatens to once again test testy relations between France and its former colony, which have been particularly strained since France launched an investigation into claims of torture by the head of Morocco's counter-terrorism unit.
Source: AFP

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today french journalists charged with bid to blackmail Arab Today, arab today french journalists charged with bid to blackmail

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Hats, scarves add beauty to women

GMT 19:10 2017 Friday ,17 February

Hats, scarves add beauty to women
Arab Today, arab today Tourist guide reveals methods of tourist attractions

GMT 17:46 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Tourist guide reveals methods of tourist attractions
Arab Today, arab today To release new antiques collection

GMT 20:33 2017 Friday ,17 February

To release new antiques collection
Arab Today, arab today Optimism on the front line

GMT 07:24 2017 Monday ,20 February

Optimism on the front line
Arab Today, arab today Murder of 2 reporters in Dominican Republic

GMT 22:45 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Murder of 2 reporters in Dominican Republic

GMT 09:05 2017 Saturday ,11 February

How algorithms (secretly) run the world

GMT 04:53 2017 Wednesday ,08 February

Iraqi author underlines the Arab women role in program

GMT 16:55 2017 Sunday ,05 February

Saudi cleric: Social media led to 'strange' practices

GMT 13:43 2017 Wednesday ,01 February

MADA- 10 Years of Hard Work and Impact
View News in Arabic - Media: وسائل الإعلام أخبار
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Kidogo provides childcare for underserved

GMT 20:24 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Kidogo provides childcare for underserved
Arab Today, arab today Tragic fluctuations of Bakhtiari's life revealed

GMT 06:50 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Tragic fluctuations of Bakhtiari's life revealed
Arab Today, arab today London to tax old cars

GMT 14:06 2017 Friday ,17 February

London to tax old cars
Arab Today, arab today Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons
Arab Today, arab today Competes Sweden and Germans by S90

GMT 22:36 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Competes Sweden and Germans by S90
Arab Today, arab today Porsche reveals new 2018 Panamera

GMT 17:31 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Porsche reveals new 2018 Panamera
Arab Today, arab today Egypt to hold first session of Arab film festival

GMT 21:11 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Egypt to hold first session of Arab film festival
Arab Today, arab today Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 20:41 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 07:30 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Actress Nadeen Al Rassi views art as her entity

GMT 06:40 2017 Friday ,10 February

MP calls for removing text from Islamic story

GMT 13:16 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

First fashion model with Down syndrome

GMT 10:26 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

Emergency UN meeting in Harare

GMT 14:04 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

"Lagom" new Swedish concept in interior design

GMT 12:07 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Bite-mimicking malaria vaccine

GMT 09:03 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Tour guide praises women’s beaches

GMT 13:12 2015 Saturday ,09 May

Sheikh Sultan opens Sharjah Centre

GMT 21:42 2017 Sunday ,12 February

Rania al-Ghazali designs candles of bubbles
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday