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French magistrates decided on Friday not to place IMF chief Christine Lagarde under formal investigation over her role in a 285 million euros arbitration payment made to a supporter of former president Nicolas Sarkozy.
Lagarde was instead given the status of a “supervised witness”, after she was questioned on her 2008 decision as Sarkozy’s finance minister to use arbitration to settle a court battle between the state and businessman Bernard Tapie.
“My explanations answered questions raised about the decisions that I had made at the time,” Lagarde told reporters outside the Paris court. “My status as a supervised witness is not a surprise for me because I always acted in the interest of the state and according to the law.”
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