Reunion between Sarkozy and the former prisoner Florence Cassez, during a signing session


Present in Pas-de-Calais to promote the new volume of his memoirs, the former President of the Republic recognized the face of this woman, whose release he had participated in ten years ago.

An old acquaintance. Came this Wednesday to Le Touquet to dedicate the second volume of the memoirs of his five-year term, The time of battles (Ed. Fayard), Nicolas Sarkozy recognized, among the hundreds of amateurs or curious people who came to see him at the city’s press house, the face of Florence Cassez, imprisoned in Mexico between 2005 and 2013. And that the ex-tenant of the Élysée had helped to release. According to The voice of the North , this 48-year-old woman, living in Dunkirk, came to greet the former President of the Republic with her daughter and her parents. A reunion which led Nicolas Sarkozy to interrupt his series of signatures to engage in a discussion with the family, which then lasted a quarter of an hour.

It is thanks to you, Mr. President, that I am here at this time. Without your investment and that of the French State, I will not be here talking to you“, in particular said Florence Cassez to Nicolas Sarkozy. And the response of the person concerned was no less emphatic: “When you are lucky enough to have great powers, you have to use them for cases that affect people like Florence.»

In 2005, Florence Cassez, a French national, was arrested in Mexico before being sentenced to 96 years in prison in 2008 for kidnappings, criminal association and possession of weapons. The young woman, who kept proclaiming her innocence, finds herself at the heart of a diplomatic crisis and a showdown between France and Mexico. Throughout his mandate, the former president will try, year after year, to negotiate with his counterpart Felipe Calderon. And will even discuss the case during an audience with Pope Benedict XVI. It will be necessary to wait until January 2013, six months after the end of Nicolas Sarkozy’s mandate, for Florence Cassez to be released. She then said at the time that he “had saved his life.»

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