The PJ Tatler

Chirac to face trial

Corruption:

If the trial goes ahead as planned, Chirac, 78, faces a month in court on charges that he masterminded a scheme to have Paris City Hall pay for work that benefited his political party when he was mayor — before he became president in 1995.

A prison term is seen as highly unlikely, but in principle if convicted, Chirac could be jailed for up to 10 years and fined euro150,000 ($210,000).

France’s restive political circles are gearing up for next year’s presidential race, but the fallout from this trial is unlikely to hit anyone other than Chirac and the nine other defendants including a grandson of Gen. Charles de Gaulle and a former left-wing labor union leader.