Sentenced in France in 2015 to three years in prison for abuse of trust and money laundering in the case that became known as Affaire Bettencourt, Patrice de Maistre, 71, is one of the owners of the new weekly “Sol”, which is about to be launched in Portugal. Maistre became known in France when, in 2010, conversations were made public that the financial administrator of Liliane Bettencourt, owner of the L’Óreal empire and, at the time, the richest woman in the world, had with her. The recordings that gave rise to the scandal also included conversations with the Minister of Labor of the government of the party of then President Nicolas Sarkozy, implying that Bettencourt would have benefited from special treatment in France, after evading taxes, accumulating millions of euros in banks in Switzerland, in exchange for contributions given to election campaigns.
In Portugal, Patrice de Maistre is the sole shareholder of a company called La Financière des Vosges (LVG – Des Vosgues, Lda), headquartered in Lisbon and whose executive director is one of his sons, Stanislas de Maistre. LVG was one of the companies that joined Lapanews shareholders two weeks ago, a company created by Rui Teixeira Santos and João Botelho to launch a new weekly in Portugal, “Sol”, after this title was acquired from Pineview, a company offshore by the former president of BES Angola, Álvaro Sobrinho, forcing the newspaper that used that name until recently to have to change to a slightly different version: “Nascer do Sol”.
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