French charge in-law of Pippa Middleton in alleged rape case

A judicial official says that the father-in-law of Pippa Middleton, the sister of the wife of Britain's Prince William, has been handed preliminary charges by a French judge for alleged rape of a minor for events in the 1990s.

The official said on Friday that David Matthews was questioned three days earlier by special police handling cases involving minors. An investigation magistrate filed a preliminary charge of "rape of a minor by a person in authority." The official wasn't authorized to speak publicly about the case and asked to remain anonymous.

The official said the alleged events dated to 1998 and 1999. French press reports that the complaint was filed by a niece couldn't be immediately confirmed.

Preliminary charges call for further investigation and can be dropped with insufficient evidence.

Matthews was freed but must periodically report to judicial authorities.

He became Pippa Middleton's father-in-law after her marriage last year to hedge fund manager James Matthews.