PARIS: French lobbyist Christine Deviers-Joncour has resumed her
testimony for the Elf fraud trial, in which her former lover Roland
Dumas is charged with embezzlement.
Deviers-Joncour is alleged to have received more than pounds 6m from Elf
to promote the oil company's interests via her relationship with
A former foreign minister and ex-president of the Constitutional
Council, Dumas is on trial for allegedly accepting gifts up to the value
of pounds 800,000 from Deviers-Joncour.
It has been announced that one of Deviers-Joncour's principal witnesses,
Alfred Sirven - who is believed to be her principal contact at Elf - has
refused to testify in the trial.
French police recently extradited Sirven from the Philippines, where he
has been in hiding for the past three years.
Deviers-Joncour triggered the trial with her tell-all account of their
love life, in which she accuses Dumas of taking money and gifts from her
in return for political favours. These include Elf's hiring of Loik Le
Floch-Prigent as chairman in 1989 and the authorisation of the sale of
pounds 1.6bn-worth of warships to Taiwan.
Deviers-Joncour has already spent five months in prison for her alleged
role in the episode. The prosecutor has asked she be jailed for three
years and fined pounds 100,000.
Seven people stand accused in the trial, which is set to come to a close