French Presidential Candidate’s Aides Arrested

Two close aides to French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen were placed in custody for interrogation. On Wednesday the French criminal police searched her National Front party’s headquarters as part of a probe into whether she embezzled European Parliament funds.

Le Pen’s body guard as well as her former cabinet head were placed in custody for an interrogation regarding suspicions of fictitious employment at the European Parliament as parliamentary assistants, Agence France-Presse reports, citing a source familiar with the case.

Le Pen dismissed the case earlier Wednesday, calling it a “political plot,” according to comments reported by AFP.

The European Parliament has ordered Le Pen to repay the money, estimating the improper payments at 336,146 euros ($353,000). She has refused to pay it back.

(AP, AFP, Bloomberg)