PARIS — Christine Lagarde, director general of the International Monetary Fund, wound up more than 25 hours of interrogation Friday night without any accusation being leveled against her for a contested decision to accept arbitration in a multimillion-dollar business case in 2008, during her tenure as France’s finance minister.
Lagarde, who announced the outcome of the proceedings herself, said she was not surprised that judicial authorities decided to retain her as a witness but not to name her as a suspect. “I have always acted in accordance with the interest of the state and in conformity with the law,” she declared.
The judicial step came after two days of intense interrogation by investigating magistrates of the Court of Justice of the Republic, which handles malfeasance cases in France. It signified that the magistrates concluded they do not have credible evidence suggesting Lagarde violated the law when she agreed to have an arbitration panel settle a dispute between the Credit Lyonnais bank and Bernard Tapie, a flamboyant French businessman.