French tycoon Jacques Bouthier accused of sexual harassment


French insurance tycoon Jacques Bouthier has been accused by four Moroccan women, who were employed by his firm in Tangier, of sexual harassment.

The women, now aged between 26 and 28, said they had been sacked after refusing to give in to harassment and intimidation.

The 75-year-old is under formal investigation in France for raping a minor and trafficking. He reportedly said he is the victim of blackmail.

Considered to be one of France’s richest men, Mr. Bouthier resigned as CEO of insurance brokers Vilavi, formerly known as Assu 2000, last month.

On Friday, the Moroccan Association for the Rights of Victims held a news conference about the allegations alleged to have occurred in Tangier between 2018 until April 2022.

Some of Mr. Bouthier’s alleged victims appeared, wearing face masks and dark glasses to hide their identities, to tell journalists about their experiences.

“He asked to sleep with me and when I said no, he asked me to introduce him to a sister, a female cousin or a friend, saying he would give me a nice present in exchange,” one is quoted by AFP news agency as saying.

The women also accused other French and Moroccan executives of involvement.

“Jacques on his own is not scary, but with his accomplices, above all in Tangier, that’s when he’s scary. So they started to harass me morally, real harassment once again, they pushed me to resign,” another said.

French police suspect the businessman of keeping up to seven teenagers in a flat over a number of years.

The French investigation began earlier this year when a 22-year-old woman went to a police station in the capital, Paris, saying she had been held captive by him for five years – forced to provide sex in return for food and lodging. (Source: BBC)