The horrific injuries inflicted on billionaire businessman Bernard Tapie and his wife during an ‘extremely violent’ burglary at their luxury estate near Paris have been pictured.
The former French government minister, 78, and his spouse 70-year-old Dominique Tapie were beaten up before being tied up with electrical cords at their manor house in Combs-La-Ville overnight on Saturday.
Now, in the previously unseen pictures, the extent of the injuries the pair sustained is clear.
Mr Tapie, who was hit over the head with a club when the group of men entered his home, now has a bloodshot eye after the blow. His cheeks and lips are also severely bruised and cut.
His wife also has a black eye as well as bruising to her nose, chin and cheeks after being beaten in the attack.
The horrific injuries inflicted on billionaire businessman Bernard Tapie (left) and his wife Dominique (right) during an ‘extremely violent’ burglary at their luxury estate near Paris have been pictured. Mr Tapie, who was hit over the head with a club when the group of men entered his home, now has a bloodshot eye after the blow
Mr Tapie’s cheeks and lips are also severely bruised after the attack (left). His wife (right) also has a black eye as well as bruising to her nose, chin and cheeks after being beaten in the attack.
The new pictures come as Paris prosecutors said today they have opened an investigation into the gang robbery.
The couple were asleep when four men broke into their house, beat them and tied them up with electrical cords.
In a sign of the seriousness of the case, the probe has been taken over by prosecutors in Paris from the local prosecutors in the town of Melun outside the capital.
Paris prosecutors said they have opened an investigation into ‘organised gang robbery, holding someone against their will to commit a crime and belonging to a criminal group.’
Bernard Tapie was attacked by burglars ‘looking for treasure’ in his luxury estate near Paris on Saturday night
Mrs Tapie managed to free herself and made her way to a neighbour’s home where she called the police.
Afterwards she was taken to hospital for treatment after several blows to the face. But Mr Tapie, once the owner of Adidas and who is fighting cancer, declined to be taken to hospital.
Their grandson Rodolphe Tapie said of the attack: ‘My grandfather refused to be taken away.
‘He is shattered, very tired. He was sitting on a chair when he was hit with a club.
‘My grandmother was taken to hospital for a check-up. She’s doing well.’
The burglars eluded guards stationed outside to break into the house known as Moulin de Breuil through a first-floor window.
Dominique Tapie, 70, raised the alarm after managing to free herself from her electrical cord binds
Local prosecutors indicated that the burglars got away with two watches, including a Rolex, and jewellery such as earrings, bracelets and a ring.
Guy Geoffroy, the Mayor of Combs-La-Ville said Mrs Tapie had raised the alarm after untying herself.
He added: ‘[The raiders] pulled her by the hair because they wanted to know where the treasure was.
‘But of course there was no treasure, and the fact that they didn’t find one made the violence even worse.’
Police officers cordoned off the area near their luxury home in the south eastern suburbs of French capital Paris
It comes as Mr Tapie awaits a major trial for fraud following a colourful career that has seen him continually in trouble with the law.
Mr Tapie served as a Socialist minister in France while also building up a sports and media empire.
He was once owner of Ligue 1 side Marseille which won five French titles and the Champions League under him, though he was also found guilty of match fixing and the side was relegated as punishment.
Mr Tapie has also received criminal convictions for tax fraud and misuse of corporate assets, and at one stage went to prison for five months.
Following his release in 1997, he enjoyed a showbiz career that saw him become a household name in France.
Mr Tapie’s latest fraud trial was adjourned last year because he was suffering from cancer. It is due to resume next May.