French conservatives in turmoil, far right mounts

May 27, 2014 10:18 AM

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The shakeup was prompted by French media reports saying that a company run by friends of Cope pocketed millions of euros for fictitious or overbilled campaign events during the 2012 presidential race.

A company lawyer, Patrick Maisonneuve, said Monday that it didn’t pocket money unfairly — but instead helped the UMP cover up more than 10 million in campaign expenses. France has a 22 million euro spending limit on presidential campaigns. Cope has said that he was unaware of any wrongdoing.

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