Man tried in France for claiming to be Brigitte Macron’s nephew, Europe News & Top Stories – .

Man tried in France for claiming to be Brigitte Macron’s nephew, Europe News & Top Stories – .

PARIS (AFP) – On Tuesday, October 26, a man was tried for attempted fraud and identity theft in a bizarre scam that saw him impersonate the nephew of the French president’s wife Emmanuel Macron.

The man, before the Paris Criminal Court, also posed as senior Elysée officials in order to obtain VIP hospitality or exclusive benefits, as well as to create a fake email address claiming to be from the French Presidency.

Claiming to be Brigitte Macron’s nephew, he sought luxury like a VIP welcome at a top hotel in Morocco, seats at the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix and an exclusive Air France loyalty card.

Most of these attempts were unsuccessful, following verifications of the companies concerned.

The last such scam attempt dates back to 2018.

Only the French embassy in Bangladesh and a hotel in Hong Kong have not revealed his intentions. Introducing himself as Brigitte Macron’s nephew, the man, in his thirties, was able to visit a Rohingya refugee camp, meet the ambassador and enjoy an upgrade to a luxury hotel in Hong Kong.

He told the court he was drawn to “status, prestige, privilege” but denied that he acted “for money” or “to do harm”.

“During my childhood, lying was part of everyday life. I ran away at 17 and started to invent a life scenario for myself to create a kind of distortion from my life before, ”he said.

The trial of the man and an alleged accomplice runs until Wednesday.

The Elysee officials he tried to impersonate Pierre-Olivier Costa, Brigitte Macron’s chief of staff, and Patrick Strzoda, Macron’s chief of staff, are both civil parties in the affair.

A Paris court in 2020 sentenced two men to prison for their role in a scam posing as French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian which sometimes even extended to the use of a silicone mask in his effigy.


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