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Former French president sentenced to jail for corruption

A French court on Monday sentenced former President Nicolas Sarkozy to three years in prison for corruption and influence peddling, but suspended two years of the sentence.

President from 2007 to 2012, he was found guilty of trying to illegally obtain information from a senior magistrate in 2014 about an ongoing investigation into his campaign finances.

Sarkozy’s lawyer Jacqueline Laffont called the verdict “extremely severe” and “totally unfounded and unjustified”, adding that the former president was “calm but determined to continue to prove his innocence”.

The French court’s ruling on Monday made Sarkozy the second head of state in modern-day France to be convicted of corruption.

The sentence means it is unlikely Sarkozy will physically go to prison, a punishment that in France usually applies to custodial terms above two years.

The court said Sarkozy would be entitled to request to be detained at home with an electronic bracelet.

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