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Pair facing charges over France sex-tape scandal
In this file photo taken on early November 09, 2015 Russian artist Pyotr Pavlensky poses after setting fire to the doors of the headquarters of the FSB security service, the successor to the KGB, in central Moscow. Emmanuel Macron's candidate for Paris mayor, Benjamin Griveaux, withdrew from the race over a leaked sex video on February 13, in a blow for the French president's party ahead of March local elections. Griveaux said he opted for retreat to protect his family after a website published video excerpts of a man masturbating, accompanied by screengrabs of racy text messages, which it said came from the former government spokesman. On February 14, the Russian performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky confirmed, in an AFP interview in the office of his lawyer Juan Branco, that he was responsible for publishing the video online. NIGINA BEROEVA / AFP.


PARIS (AFP).- A Russian artist and his girlfriend will face a judge over a sex-video scandal that damaged the career of an ally of French President Emmanuel Macron, prosecutors said Monday.

Pyotr Pavlensky and Alexandra de Taddeo could be charged on Tuesday with invasion of privacy and publishing images of a sexual nature without consent.

Pavlensky has already admitted publishing a video showing a man masturbating, along with racy text messages sent to a woman.

The video prompted Benjamin Griveaux, a married father of three, to pull out of the race to be Paris mayor a month before the first round of voting.

Griveaux has filed a complaint and politicians from across the spectrum have come to his defence, portraying the 42-year-old as a victim of a hatchet job.

Pavlensky, 35, told AFP last Friday that he wanted to expose the "hypocrisy" of Griveaux and his campaign pledges to uphold family values.

Taddeo, 29, is believed to have been the recipient of the videos sent in 2018.

Griveaux's fall left Macron's Republic on the Move (LREM) party scrambling to find a replacement candidate for Paris mayor.

Health Minister Agnes Buzyn is set to take his place despite the daunting odds -- Griveaux was already running in a distant third place before the scandal broke.

Pavlensky, who has a long record of provocative performances, received asylum in France in 2017 after several radical protests in Russia.

He was originally detained on Saturday on accusations he pulled a knife during a brawl at a New Year's Eve party in Paris, before investigators shifted their focus to the leaked sex video.


© Agence France-Presse






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