A brief chronological and procedural reminder in the case of fictitious jobs at the City of Paris to explain the purpose of this note.
In this case, Jacques Chirac was indicted for alleged misappropriation of public funds and breach of trust by Ms. Xaviere SIMEONI, Investigating Judge, on November 27, 2007 after losing the benefit of her presidential immunity. The Paris City Council naturally formed a civil party. On 30 October 2009, the Examining Magistrate ordered the dismissal of Jacques Chirac before the Tribunal Correctionnel.
In the logic of things, Jacques Chirac must be judged, surely in 2011 and at this hearing will present the City of Paris as victim to seek compensation for his injury.
But today the press is echoing the possible signature of a memorandum of understanding between the UMP, Jacques Chirac and the City of Paris to allow the latter to be compensated for his material damage namely the amount of wages paid to fictitious employees under the Chirac era, in addition to interest and legal fees (A trifle to 2 million euros). Until one might think that there is nothing abnormal. But the press quickly rushes to clarify that this agreement will probably result in the release of Jacques Chirac when he is tried in a trial where there would be no more accusation.
Why such an assertion?
The fact that the civil party is indemnified after the order for reference before the Tribunal and before the trial does not prevent the latter from holding it. The investigating judge ordered the dismissal of Jacques Chirac before the Tribunal and he will be tried. On the other hand, this prohibits the civil party from making a claim during the trial. Such a request would be inadmissible.
More importantly, it should be recalled that in the criminal proceedings, the prosecution supports the prosecution and not the civil party even if it happens regularly that some confreres walk on the Prosecutor’s platform when plead in favor of a civil party.
The absence of the civil party in the criminal trial does not therefore prevent the Public Prosecutor from demanding a conviction and a sentence. (Thus, the violent husband does not understand to be convicted while his wife informs the Tribunal want to “withdraw his complaint”),
Yes, but in this case at the stage of the investigation proceedings, the Paris Public Prosecutor had requested a dismissal in favor of Jacques Chirac on the one hand that certain facts were prescribed and that for the period not prescribed were insufficient. He considered that there was no basis for the trial of Jacques Chirac.
Therefore, if the Paris prosecution services are coherent, the Prosecutor should request a release. It may happen that the deputy prosecutor present at the hearing does not agree with his colleague who had taken requisitions at the investigation stage and made different requisitions. However, it seems unlikely that this will happen in such a media file aimed at a former president of the republic.
However, the Tribunal is seized by the order of reference of the investigating judge and will therefore have to decide whether or not Jacques Chirac committed the offenses with which he is accused. And who knows if three magistrates could not declare him guilty? After all, an investigating judge decided to refer him to the Criminal Court despite an indictment by the public prosecutor.
Finally, if the Public Prosecutor wanted to avoid embarrassing himself with this file and to be sure that Jacques Chirac was not convicted, he still had the means to do so.
Once the order for reference has been issued by the investigating judge, the file is forwarded to the public prosecutor, who, pursuant to Article 180 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, is required to send it without delay to the Registry of the court for a ruling . The text specifies ” If the correctional court is seized, the public prosecutor must have the accused summoned for one of the next hearings, observing the time limits for the citation provided for in this code .
In other words, it is up to the Public Prosecution Service (Hearing Services) to find a hearing date on the court’s agenda. Once this date has been set, the Prosecutor must draw up a schedule of summons (to make a simple summons for the accused), which will then be issued by bailiff to the person concerned,
What would happen if the public prosecutor “forgot” to set a date for a hearing and to issue a summons to Jacques Chirac? The trial would simply not take place, and what would happen if three years passed without any act of prosecution? Facts of a correctional nature would then be prescribed.