The French president’s wife, Brigitte Macron, has filed a legal complaint after fraudsters attempted to steal her identity to get into expensive restaurants and events around the world.
The scammers sent dozens of emails from an address purportedly linked to the Élysée Palace – email@example.com –requesting tables, tickets or VIP treatment. The address is similar to that used by the French presidency.
One of her aides said on Friday: “A complaint has been lodged and an inquiry is under way.” The aide added that the fraudsters had been unsuccessful in their attempts to impersonate her, but there were fears for her image.
“It’s quite clearly an attempt to damage her reputation,” a source close to Macron told RTL radio, which broke the story.
It reported that the fraudulent emails had been sent as far afield as Australia, Hong Kong and Morocco as well as closer to home, in the last 10 days.
The missives requested invitations to luxury hotels and five-star restaurants in Paris – at the best tables, of course – and tickets to the Australian Grand Prix. A Moroccan hotel reportedly received a request to send a car to pick up Macron’s nephew at the airport.
Macron has lived in a private wing at the Élysée Palace with her husband, Emmanuel, since shortly after he won the presidential election in May 2017.
Presidents’ spouses do not have an official role in France, where the “ lady” title does not exist. President Macron’s campaign declaration that he would create an official status for his wife was dropped after a public outcry.
Instead, the Élysée published a “transparency charter” outlining her role and status, and the public funds given to her office