Opening of a judicial investigation by the prosecutor’s office of Versailles

An investigation was opened in Nanterre after the government’s report on the private group Orpea, manager of Ehpad, suspected of institutional abuse and embezzlement of public funds, the Nanterre prosecutor’s office said on Thursday.

Reported last March

This report was sent on March 28 to the prosecution after an administrative investigation carried out by the State which revealed “serious dysfunctions” in the management of accommodation establishments for dependent elderly people (Ehpad).

This judicial investigation, entrusted to the gendarmes of the Versailles Research Section, was joined to investigations, already underway since February, for “forgery and use of forgery and violation of labor legislation by abusively resorting to contracts to fixed term,” the prosecution said.

Nearly 70 complaints filed

The investigation also relates to a good “part of the complaints” filed by the lawyer at the Paris bar Sarah Saldmann, at the beginning of April 2022, the rest of the complaints being still “under study”. Me Saldmann had announced that he had filed around 70 complaints with the prosecution. For these files, which denounce facts throughout the country, the investigations were “entrusted to the general management of the national gendarmerie”, according to the prosecution.

On March 26, the government announced that it was taking legal action on the basis of the conclusions of this report and that it intended to require Orpea to reimburse public grants allegedly diverted from their purposes.

A book that changed everything

The Orpea group, whose headquarters is located in Puteaux (Hauts-de-Seine) has been under fire from critics since the publication at the end of January of Victor Castanet’s book-investigation, “Les Fossoyeurs”.

He describes a system, within the private group, where hygiene care, medical care, and even residents’ meals are “rationed” to improve the company’s profitability. And this while stays are charged at full price, notes Victor Castanet.

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