French judges question Iranian opposition leader
AP [ TUESDAY, JULY 29, 2003]
PARIS: French anti-terrorist investigators questioned Tuesday a leader of an outlawed Iranian exile group about her alleged involvement in terror financing, judicial officials said. Maryam Rajavi, who is married to the head of the Mujahedeen Khalq, a movement that seeks the overthrow of Iran's clerical regime, arrived at the Justice Ministry surrounded by police.

She declined to speak to reporters, but in the past has denied any wrongdoing and vowed to cooperate with authorities.

Rajavi and 16 others have been formally placed under investigation a step short of charges on suspicion of raising funds for possible attacks on Iranian diplomatic missions in Europe.

She was briefly jailed after police raided Mujahedeen Khalq's offices outside Paris on June 18 and seized US$9 million in cash.

She was released July 3 on payment of a US$93,000 bail. The crackdown provoked dramatic protests across Europe by exiled Iranians, several of whom set themselves on fire.

Listed as a terrorist organization by the United States and the European Union, the Mujahedeen Khalq is battling to overthrow Iran's hardline Islamic government.

The group's fighters based in neighboring Iraq were disarmed by U.S. forces in April.