The president of the small pro-Frexit UPR party François Asselineau was taken into custody on Wednesday February 3 for sexual assault. A procedure that could disappoint his hopes of running for the Élysée again and threaten his role at the head of a movement where he was very contested.
→ PORTRAIT. François Asselineau, the “Frexit” candidate
The 63-year-old man was taken into custody on charges of moral harassment, sexual harassment and sexual assault, AFP learned from the Paris prosecutor’s office, confirming information from the Point. “The measurement is still in progress”, said this source.
François Asselineau is kept in police custody as part of an investigation opened for these same reasons on May 15, 2020 by the Paris prosecutor’s office and entrusted to the Personal Crime Repression Brigade (BRDP) of the Paris judicial police.
Two complaints had been filed by two alleged victims and former employees of the UPR, one in Allier, the other in Paris, and a former executive had made a report to the public prosecutor. These accusations revealed by Le Figaro and Release were then qualified as “Slander” by François Asselineau.
The entourage of the head of the UPR (Republican Popular Union) again denied “Firmly” Wednesday February 3 these accusations which, “For the most part, allege facts which allegedly took place before they were even hired”.
François Asselineau is “Heard within the framework of the legal proceedings initiated by two former employees of the movement, concomitantly with an attempt to take control of the UPR by a handful of members”, notes his entourage.
Calls for resignation within his movement
Several dozen executives of the movement had called for his resignation in the spring, citing “The existence of special relations and more than insistent on (the) part” by François Asselineau with regard to UPR employees, “Source of serious psychological suffering”.
Having failed to get him to leave, they then demanded that the president of the UPR stand “Indented” of his duties during the legal proceedings. François Asselineau had nevertheless convened at the beginning of July a virtual congress during which he was reelected hands down at the head of the sovereignist party.
0.92% of the votes in 2017
Supporter of France’s exit from the European Union, the euro and NATO, François Asselineau declared during a televised debate on France 2 in April 2019 that he “Expected to be a candidate for the next presidential election”.
→ ANALYSIS. Europe: French political parties, critical but rarely outgoing
After failing to run for the 2012 presidential election, he was able to gather enough sponsorship to be a candidate in 2017 and obtained 0.92% of the vote. The UPR has 39,000 members, half according to the dissidents.