The mayor of Saint-Etienne, the former member of LR Gaël Perdriau, was indicted for “participation in a criminal association with a view to committing blackmail” on Friday January 19 after an interrogation of nearly eight hours, his lawyers announced.

Already indicted for blackmail last April, Mr. Perdriau “still contests all of the facts” with which he is accused in connection with the existence of a “sex tape” intended to politically neutralize the former centrist deputy Gilles Artigues, the lawyers announced in a press release.

At the heart of the case, his possible role in the filming, use and financing via embezzlement of public funds of this video shot in January 2015 in which we see Mr. Artigues being massaged by an escort boy in a bedroom. ‘hotel.

Mr. Perdriau has already been indicted for blackmail and placed under assisted witness status for “embezzlement of public funds by a depositary of public authority” on April 6 in the context of this affair which has shaken his city since its revelation in August 2022. He was then placed under judicial supervision, with a bail of 60,000 euros.

Implicated by his former right-hand man

His judicial review was not modified on Friday, specify his lawyers, Christophe Ingrain and Jean-Félix Luciani. Their press release announces their intention to make “in the coming days requests for confrontation which will demonstrate the veracity of [their] client’s statements”.

The indictment of Mr. Perdriau follows that of his former chief of staff for criminal conspiracy last December. His former right-hand man, who had until then denied any responsibility in this affair, implicated him during his last hearing by affirming that he had given the “green light” to the blackmail operation and had taken care of of its financing, according to extracts from the minutes published by Mediapart.