IMF chief to be questioned again in French corruption case

PARIS - Christine Lagarde, the head of the International Monetary Fund, is once again due to be questioned in an ongoing French corruption case, sources close to the case said Friday.

Lagarde will be questioned Wednesday by a special court that probes cases of ministerial misconduct over her role in a 400-million-euro ($556,000) state payout made to disgraced tycoon Bernard Tapie in 2008, the anonymous sources said.

Prosecutors working for the Court of Justice of the Republic suspect he received favourable treatment in return for supporting Nicolas Sarkozy in the 2007 presidential election.

They have suggested Lagarde - who at the time was finance minister - was partly responsible for "numerous anomalies and irregularities" which could lead to charges for complicity in fraud and misappropriation of public funds.

Five people have been indicted in the case, including a top aide to Lagarde at the time, and the court already last year interviewed her as a witness.

She was questioned again at the end of January this year.

The payout to Tapie was connected to a dispute between the businessman and the Credit Lyonnais bank.