(Paris) The French Minister of Justice, Éric Dupond-Moretti, failed on Friday to have a finding of the irregularity of the search carried out in his offices in 2021 as part of the investigation which earned him to be sent to trial for conflicts of interest related to his past duties as a lawyer.

Appointed to general surprise to Justice in July 2020 by Emmanuel Macron, this former tenor of the bar is suspected of having used his ministerial functions to settle scores with magistrates with whom he had had trouble from the time he was attorney. He had notably ordered disciplinary proceedings against a magistrate who had charged one of his clients in Monaco.

Initiated by the magistrates’ unions, the investigation, unprecedented in France, led to the indictment of Éric Dupond-Moretti, heavyweight and strong head of the government, and his referral to trial before the court responsible for judging the offenses committed by ministers, the Court of Justice of the Republic. The Minister appealed against this dismissal.

As part of these investigations, a search was carried out on July 1, 2021 at the Ministry of Justice, located Place Vendôme in Paris, angering Mr. Dupond-Moretti who challenged its legality.

The Minister had seized the Constitutional Council in the hope of finding that French law, which does not provide for any particular restriction during searches in a ministry, violated the principle of separation between the executive and judicial powers and was thus contrary to the Constitution. .

The institution, guarantor of the constitutionality of the laws, however proved him wrong on Friday by recalling that the principle of separation of powers which governs the institutions is not as such “a right or a freedom that the Constitution guarantees” and cannot therefore justify referral to the Constitutional Council by a litigant.

“The Council refuses to recognize a constitutional value in the independence of the executive power when the parliamentary power as the judicial power benefit from special regimes with regard to searches”, regretted to AFP Me Patrice Spinosi, counsel for Eric Dupond-Moretti, seeing it as an “institutional imbalance”.

Weakened by his legal challenge, Éric Dupond-Moretti has always ruled out resigning.