french journalists charged with bid to blackmail
Last Updated : GMT 18:26:54
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

arabstoday
arabstoday

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*

french journalists charged with bid to blackmail french journalists charged with bid to blackmail

 



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*

french journalists charged with bid to blackmail french journalists charged with bid to blackmail

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Jordanian woman reveals her project

GMT 00:46 2017 Saturday ,11 November

Jordanian woman reveals her project
Arab Today, arab today Japanese regulators raid Airbnb

GMT 00:44 2017 Monday ,20 November

Japanese regulators raid Airbnb
Arab Today, arab today Keep kids busy at Thanksgiving gatherings

GMT 11:14 2017 Friday ,10 November

Keep kids busy at Thanksgiving gatherings
Arab Today, arab today Saudi, Bahrain target Iran

GMT 00:48 2017 Monday ,20 November

Saudi, Bahrain target Iran
Arab Today, arab today Europe turns on Facebook, Google

GMT 02:26 2017 Monday ,20 November

Europe turns on Facebook, Google
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Australian academic's book pulled

GMT 15:20 2017 Monday ,13 November

Australian academic's book pulled
Arab Today, arab today May under Brexit pressure at EU reform summit

GMT 02:14 2017 Saturday ,18 November

May under Brexit pressure at EU reform summit
Arab Today, arab today Delhi half-marathon to go ahead

GMT 03:51 2017 Saturday ,18 November

Delhi half-marathon to go ahead
Arab Today, arab today The history of solar eclipses

GMT 05:16 2017 Sunday ,20 August

The history of solar eclipses
Arab Today, arab today Driverless, electric future just round

GMT 02:45 2017 Monday ,20 November

Driverless, electric future just round
Arab Today, arab today Tesla unveils its all-electric semi truck

GMT 02:59 2017 Saturday ,18 November

Tesla unveils its all-electric semi truck
Arab Today, arab today Mona Abdel Ghany increased artistic activities

GMT 12:15 2017 Friday ,17 November

Mona Abdel Ghany increased artistic activities
Arab Today, arab today paObama climate envoy slams Trump's rejection

GMT 16:04 2017 Friday ,17 November

paObama climate envoy slams Trump's rejection

GMT 12:22 2017 Thursday ,16 November

Hanan Metawe denies apology for “Major Treason”

GMT 11:15 2017 Thursday ,16 November

Angola oil boss sacked by father's protege

GMT 18:41 2017 Friday ,20 October

Designer Aql Faqih aspires to innovation

GMT 11:38 2017 Wednesday ,15 November

Unloved vultures fight for their survival

GMT 11:49 2017 Thursday ,17 August

Egyptian artist presents new collection of designs

GMT 02:28 2017 Saturday ,18 November

Anti-drug operation nets 4 tonnes

GMT 01:34 2017 Friday ,17 November

Banyan Tree Phuket Takes Festive Season

GMT 17:12 2017 Monday ,07 August

Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse

GMT 16:53 2017 Tuesday ,05 September

Youssra depended on colored foam
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