Press release to Agence France Presse dated April 29th 2014 by M. Fabien CHALANDON
in respect of the VISIONEX case
Indicted on July 1st 2010 in the VISIONEX case for breaching the 1983 law prohibiting gaming machines, M. Fabien CHALANDON has been sent to trial in front of the Paris penal court following a decision of the investigative magistrate on January 12th 2014. This trial will allow M. Fabien CHALANDON to prove that such wrongdoing is in fact inexistent, and that the related unfounded accusation has fraudulently been fabricated by the falsification of evidence and by the refusal to investigate the actions of the French administration as well as its relevant political decision makers, then in charge. Consequently, M. Fabien CHALANDON has decided to break his self imposed silence, is publicly denouncing serious and inadmissible breaches of the French rule of law, and has lodged a penal complaint seeking due redress and damages.
The start-up VISIONEX had been providing since May 2007 in French public areas like bars internet access for a fee, optimized for computer illiterate users, with a second screen distributing advertising, and incentivized by a promotional lottery legal under the French Consumer Code. The VISIONEX product was also competing for the same space which PMU and Française des Jeux, the then two state-controlled lottery and betting monopolies, considered to be earmarked for their own gaming machine and advertising screens.
To secure its project, VISIONEX had gathered numerous technical and legal advices, and extensively consulted the French administration, including on the status of its promotional lottery.
As part of this process, the Department for Public Liberties of the Ministry of Interior had given on November 23rd 2007 a verbal approval of the promotional lottery, but simultaneously had denounced VISIONEX to the Gaming Judicial police, to ensure initiation of penal proceedings under the gaming law of 1983.
Such misunderstanding was interpreted by M. SIGOIGNET, manager of VISIONEX, as a conspiracy, confirmed when during his arrest, he heard “ even if the courts clear you in three years, your business is dead, which is our main objective”, a prospect he faced helplessly, as he was unable to prove the verbal agreement of November 2007.
At this point, M. Albin CHALANDON, former justice minister, and privy to this situation, wrote a letter dated March 28th 2008 to the Minister of Interior, Mrs. ALLIOT-MARIE, denouncing this situation, and exposing the risk that the company may be economically and socially destroyed by this penal proceeding way before any court judgement.
In addition, he asked his son, M. Fabien CHALANDON to investigate the circumstances of the November 23rd 2007 meeting, and the rationale behind the duplicity and the cowardice of French authorities. With tenacity, and the use of words, he managed to receive the written proof describing what happened during this meeting, namely the grant of an informal agreement to run this promotional lottery, whilst ensuring that the Gaming Police starts proceedings against it under the gaming law of 1983.
This conspiracy has then been covered up by the highest members of the the French government. The CHALANDONs, father and son, denounced 22 times between, 2008 and 2010, this conspiracy and the unlawful methods of the Gaming Police, reiterating each time their request for an audit by IGPN to the 5 member of the rightist government in charge, namely Mrs. ALLIOT-MARIE, Mrs. DATI, M. HORTEFEUX, M. WOERTH, and Prime Minister M. FILLION, as well as the justice adviser of Mr. SARKOZY, then president: none responded. Such an audit, the first in the history of the Gaming Police, will only be ordered in 2012 by M. VALS, the new Interior Minister of the leftist AYRAULT government, after Mr. HOLLANDE, then campaigning for French presidency, was informed by M. Fabien CHALANDON.
Stimulated by this ministerial silence, the Gaming police issued several penal proceeding firstly against bar tenders and VISIONEX operators in the small village of Limoux, using the same questionable methods. But on April 7th 2010, the Carcassonne penal court acquitted them of any wrongdoing, after acquiescing the conspiracy of November 2007, and publicly reading a letter of Mrs. ALLIOT-MARIE to Mrs. DATI, then justice minister, dated July 21st 2008, which cleared M. SIGOIGNET of any wrongdoing following the November 2007 conspiracy. On February 22nd 2012 the Montpelier appeal court upheld this judgment using identical wording.
In retaliation to these denunciations, the Gaming police initiates in Paris in early 2010 three legal proceedings, aimed directly at VISIONEX, but also at M. Fabien CHALANDON, M. Albin CHALANDON and M. SENAT, still adviser to Mrs. ALLIOT-MARIE, then Justice Minister. Rather chocked by his humiliating arrest and degrading 48 hours cross-examination, his indictment and his remand in pre-emptive custody on July 1st 2010, cancelled by the Appeal Court on July 12th 2010, M. Fabien CHALANDON gains access to the case documentation assembled by the investigative magistrate. After three years of an in-depth counter investigation, M. Fabien CHALANDON progressively discovers a falsified procedure, fabricated by fraudulent criminal means to mislead the courts.
A first set of fabrications is masterminded to wrongly induce that the VISIONEX equipment is a gaming machine, to ensure the indictment and the remanding in custody of VISIONEX’s manager. For example, the initial police enquiry, overseen by the prosecutor’s office, evidences a police report of January 18th 2010 which describes a modus operandi of the VISIONEX equipment, which had not yet been implemented, and was only discovered a month later.
A second set of fabrications evidences an organized and calculated plan specifically conducted against M. Fabien CHALANDON in retaliation for having exposed the methods of the Gaming Police.
This plan is engineered to first mislead the investigating magistrate into indicting M. Fabien CHALANDON, a preliminary step to its remanding in custody. To portray M. Fabien CHALANDON’s actions as an attempt to legalize the unlawful VISIONEX business, the Gaming police conceals any reference to the November 2007 conspiracy. It then confects proofs and clues to provide forged evidence of M. Fabien CHALANDON’s role as a co-manager of unlawful gaming machines. It also attempts to depict M. Fabien CHALANDON’s advisory remuneration as an equity stake in the business, thus evidencing its persistence in falsifying the facts. Such forgeries, which will be disclosed during the coming trial, are still preventing today the due process of investigating the conspiracy, its motivations and the wrongdoings uncovered by the CHALANDONs: the existing investigation is totally silent on this matter. But it is clearly responsible for having led VISIONEX into judicial liquidation whilst being presumably innocent. This is the reason why M. Fabien CHALANDON’s penal complaint, which he lodged as a plaintiff seeking due redress and damages, is now covering the still not investigated broader aspects of this case, and is going after those who had a vested interest in destroying VISIONEX, and who conspired to damage the reputation of the individuals who provided in good faith their support to VISIONEX.
This plan is also devised by the Gaming police to deceive the courts into remanding M. Fabien CHALANDON in pre-emptive custody, and to this effect to produce fake proofs or clues of reprehensible actions legally prompting such incarceration.
A charge of escaping arrest is concocted and pressed by the Gaming Police: whilst looking for him in Paris, it had received telephonic confirmation from M. Fabien CHALANDON, then residing in his family country house close to Paris, that it was immediately driving back to their office: the judicial transcript of the phone conversation proving it vanished and was replaced by a subsequent police report not mentioning it.
Whilst awaiting the return of M. Fabien CHALANDON, the Gaming police searched his domicile, and seize a USB key and two thick folders, with an attached explanatory note prepared for their attention: feeling stupid and outwitted, it fabricates a phoney charge of destroying evidence and obstructing justice. Interestingly, a copy of these two 1.500 page folders, which presents the detailed evidence of Messrs. Fabien and Albin CHALANDON’s actions in favour of VISIONEX but also the administrative and political chaotic response to it, was handed over by them to M. MARIN, then Paris chief prosecutor: he never forwarded it to the investigative magistrate, nor even mentioned it to any judge.
Other similar proofs were concealed for three months to ensure the failure of M. Fabien CHALANDON’s appeal requesting his release from pre-emptive custody.
The investigation which closed on January 14th 2014 never responded when M. Fabien CHALANDON strongly contested the claims and fabrications of the Gaming police, questioned the lawfulness of their actions, or observed that such a sophisticated fraudulent plan required senior approval and backing. Also remains unanswered his questioning of the legal basis of the penal charge: neither the investigative magistrate nor the prosecutor’s office could ignore that the French Parliament passed a law on December 16th 2013, which expressively forbids prosecuting a promotional lottery using the gaming law of 1983, thus also confirming what was all along known: that their legal definition had always been mutually exclusive.
The rule of law in any democracy requires that whenever power is exercised, it is subject to check and balances. This is why M. Fabien CHALANDON has lodged on June 28th 2013 an initial penal complaint to the Paris prosecutor’s office. The latter having inadmissibly remained silent despite the seriousness of the disclosed wrongdoings and the gravity of the claims and accusations, M. Fabien CHALANDON has lodged on January 17th 2014 a second penal complaint to the office of the Senior Investigative Magistrate, this time seeking due redress and damages against unknown parties but also against identified individuals acting in concert. It contains 17 penal incriminations, including 3 criminal ones and 14 felonies, with the aggravating circumstance of acting as an organized group.
The judicial system cannot ignore anymore these serious breaches of the rule of law.