French court to review dismissal of rape case against minister
PARIS (Reuters) - An appeal court must look again at whether a judge's decision to dismiss an investigation into rape allegations against France's budget minister was valid, a court ruled on Thursday. The investigation into the allegations against Gerald Darmanin, who is a close political ally of President Emmanuel Macron and denies rape, was dropped in August 2018 when prosecutors said they could not establish 'absence of consent'. Darmanin has described the allegations as slander.
PARIS (Reuters) - An appeal court must look again at whether a judge's decision to dismiss an investigation into rape allegations against France's budget minister was valid, a court ruled on Thursday.
The investigation into the allegations against Gerald Darmanin, who is a close political ally of President Emmanuel Macron and denies rape, was dropped in August 2018 when prosecutors said they could not establish "absence of consent".
Darmanin has described the allegations as slander. He could not immediately be reached for comment on Thursday.
A re-opening of the investigation could harm Darmanin's ambitions to stand next year in municipal elections which will be important for Macron if he is to anchor his fledgling LaRepublique en Marche party at the local level.
The woman accused Darmanin of coercing her into having sex in 2009 when she sought his help in having her criminal record cleared. She appealed against last year's decision but the Paris Court of Appeal had said she did so too late.
On Thursday, the Cour de Cassation, which does not judge facts but only whether a decision by an appeal court conforms to law, told the Court of Appeal to review the judge's initial ruling again.
The rape allegation came at a time of heightened demand for action against predatory sexual behaviour or abuse of power for sexual favours following the sex scandal surrounding U.S. movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.
(Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; editing by Richard Lough and Timothy Heritage)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.
By Tim Hepher and David Ljunggren PARIS/OTTAWA (Reuters) - France said on Friday it would download the black boxes from a Ukrainian airliner downed by an Iranian missile in January, easing a stand-off over where they should be read. France's BEA crash investigation agency said it was acting at the request of Iran, which remains responsible under global rules for conducting a formal accident probe after acknowledging that the Boeing 737 was downed by its forces
By Brad Brooks LUBBOCK, Texas (Reuters) - With new coronavirus cases surging in Texas and Florida, officials in both states on Friday ordered bars to close again and imposed tighter restrictions on restaurants, setting back efforts to reopen their economies. Governor Greg Abbott gave bars in Texas until midday Friday to shut, while Florida's Department of Business and Professional Regulation told bars to immediately stop serving alcohol on their premises
By Patricia Zengerle WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate passed legislation on Thursday that would impose mandatory sanctions on people or companies that back efforts by China to restrict Hong Kong's autonomy, pushing back against Beijing's new security law for the city. The measure also includes secondary sanctions on banks that do business with anyone found to be backing any crackdown on the territory's autonomy, potentially cutting them off from American counterparts and limiting access to U.S.