French Senator Joël Guerriau was arrested at his Paris residence following allegations that he drugged a fellow Member of Parliament (MP) with the intention of sexual assault.
The unnamed MP reported feeling unwell after having a drink with Guerriau, leading to hospitalization where traces of ecstasy were reportedly found in her system.
The woman subsequently filed a criminal complaint, and Guerriau, one of 18 Independents in the French upper house and a member of the centrist Horizons party, has not been charged.
His lawyer criticized the leaked information from the inquiry and emphasized the need to investigate the source. Guerriau, 66, a former banker, was elected to the Senate in 2011 and serves as vice-president of its foreign and military affairs committee.
The Paris prosecutor’s office stated he was detained on suspicion of administering a substance to commit sexual assault. Guerriau is not eligible for parliamentary immunity under the circumstances.
If found guilty, he could face up to five years in prison and a €75,000 fine. The party Horizons plans to discuss his position in light of the allegations.