French business magnate and former politician Bernard Tapie, whose career was marred by a series of legal troubles, died at the age of 78, four years after being diagnosed with cancer.
“Dominique Tapie and his family have the immense sadness to announce the death of her husband and their father, Bernard Tapie, this Sunday,” said his family in a statement to the Marseille newspaper La Provence, of which Tapie was majority shareholder.
One of his sons, Stéphane Tapie, confirmed his father’s death with a “Goodbye my phoenix” post on Instagram.
The statement reads: “He left in peace, surrounded by his wife, children and grandchildren, who were at his bedside”, adding that he wished to be buried in Marseille, “the city of his heart”.
Tapie came from modest beginnings in a tough corner of Paris, but he became one of the most successful and high-profile French businessmen, flaunting his wealth with American flair.
He was the longtime president of the Olympique Marseille football team, bought a cycling team and even found time to act, taking on roles that included that of a police inspector on a popular television show.
Tapie also dabbled in politics, becoming minister of urban affairs in François Mitterrand’s socialist government in the 1990s and later a member of the French and European parliament.
But his empire collapsed spectacularly in the late 1990s, starting with a match-fixing trial after which he served his time in prison.
He was later prosecuted for his purchase of the German sports brand Adidas in 1990, which he was forced to sell a few years later to the state-owned Crédit Lyonnais bank.
A court found him guilty of fraud on an arbitration agreement with the bank – he claimed he was scammed on the selling price – and an appeals court is expected to deliver his ruling on Wednesday.
[ https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/03/scandal-ridden-french-tycoon-bernard-tapie-dies-aged-78 https://d26toa8f6ahusa.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/30214746/a-quiet-place-part-2-bigs-16.pdf