Europe

France: Le Pen staff questioned in parliament jobs probe

  • French far right leader and presidential candidate Marine Le Pen speaks to journalists after her meeting with Lebanese foreign minister Gibran Bassil, in Beirut, Lebanon, Monday, Feb. 20, 2017. Le Pen has met with the president of Lebanon, saying their two countries should be "pillars" in organizing the fight against Islamic fundamentalism. Le Pen's National Front party claims Muslim immigration to France boosts terror risks, costs jobs and drains the nation's treasury. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

    French far right leader and presidential candidate Marine Le Pen speaks to journalists after her meeting with Lebanese foreign minister Gibran Bassil, in Beirut, Lebanon, Monday, Feb. 20, 2017. Le Pen has met with the president of Lebanon, saying their two countries should be "pillars" in organizing the fight against Islamic fundamentalism. Le Pen's National Front party claims Muslim immigration to France boosts terror risks, costs jobs and drains the nation's treasury. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017 file photo, Far-right leader presidential candidate Marine Le Pen gestures as she speaks during a conference in Lyon, France. If Marine Le Pen has her way, the French will soon pay for their baguettes with francs, not euros. The presidential candidate from the anti-EU, anti-immigration National Front party is all about national sovereignty and independence. She wants France to take control of its money, subject to a referendum that would lead France out of the European Union and its shared currency. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, file)

    FILE - In this Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017 file photo, Far-right leader presidential candidate Marine Le Pen gestures as she speaks during a conference in Lyon, France. If Marine Le Pen has her way, the French will soon pay for their baguettes with francs, not euros. The presidential candidate from the anti-EU, anti-immigration National Front party is all about national sovereignty and independence. She wants France to take control of its money, subject to a referendum that would lead France out of the European Union and its shared currency. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, file)  (The Associated Press)

French far right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen's bodyguard and a top aide are being questioned in an investigation into money spent on her party's European Parliament assistants.

Asked about the questioning, Le Pen dismissed the probe Wednesday as "political maneuvering" ahead of the April-May election.

An official close to the investigation said bodyguard Thierry Legier and aide Catherine Griset, who were also employed as European Parliament assistants, were taken in for questioning Wednesday near Paris. The official was not authorized to be publicly named.

The European Parliament and Paris prosecutor's office are both investigating the case.

Investigators suspect that members of Le Pen's National Front used legislative aides for the party's political activity while they were on Parliament's payroll. The party denies wrongdoing.