“For several days”, Mr. Perdriau “has been the subject of despicable and infamous accusations”, on which he wishes “to be able to explain himself as soon as possible”, indicate in a press release his lawyers, Christophe Ingrain and Julie Pasternak .

The mayor of St-Etienne “contests all of these accusations”, and intends “to bring to the attention of the investigators all the information available to him. They will put an end to the media campaign as violent as it is unfounded that he is undergoing right now,” his advice continues.

The complaint for “aggravated blackmail, ambush in an organized gang, embezzlement of public funds and non-denunciation of criminal acts” was filed by Mr. Artigues on Monday before the Saint-Etienne prosecutor’s office, which relinquished jurisdiction in favor of that of Lyons. The latter opened a preliminary investigation on Tuesday, entrusted to the PJ.

Asked by AFP, Me Ingrain also affirmed that “in a second step, a complaint for slanderous denunciation will be filed by Gaël Perdriau concerning the false declarations of Gilles Artigues”.

Mediapart published an investigation on Friday claiming that a deputy mayor, Samy Kéfi-Jérôme, had organized a filmed meeting with a gay escort to trap and muzzle Mr. Artigues.

Publishing compromising images taken from the video, Médiapart reports the revelations of the former companion of Mr. Kéfi-Jérôme at the time of the alleged facts, Gilles Rossary-Lenglet. The latter claims to have organized at the end of 2014, with Mr. Kéfi-Jérôme, the meeting between Mr. Artigues and the escort in a Parisian hotel room.

According to him, this video would then have allowed the municipal team of Gaël Perdriau to put pressure on the father of the family and to dissuade him from a possible dissidence. Previously, his candidacy for the second round of municipal elections in 2008 had divided the right and contributed to the election of Maurice Vincent (PS).

Gilles Rossary-Lenglet also told Médiapart that he had received a job offer from the town hall in recent years, which did not materialize, and 50,000 euros for services rendered, via remuneration by cultural associations.

For his part, Samy Kéfi-Jérôme, regional councilor, was suspended on Saturday from his duties as delegate for the digital strategy of the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes region by its president Laurent Wauquiez.