A French appeals court upheld an insider-trading conviction of billionaire investor George Soros Thursday.
Soros' conviction and pending appeal were an issue in the U.S. during last fall's presidential campaign. While Soros was funneling $27 million to liberal groups so they could pay for TV campaigns against President Bush's reelection, supporters of the president pointed to the billionaire's French legal troubles as indication of his lack of credibility and ethics.
The president's supporters say that the appeals court ruling confirmed their criticism. "Soros is quick to find fault with those whom he disagrees," says Peter Flaherty, president of the National Legal and Policy Center. "Soros now seeks to play such a huge role in the electoral process, the American people deserve to know the truth about Soros' past and his business dealings."
During a Soros media and speaking tour through swing states in October (on which he called for the defeat of President Bush), NLPC protested with a "Soros Truth Squad" at five of his appearances.
Attorneys for the Hungarian-born businessman planned to appeal to the French supreme court and said their client remained "confident that ultimately he'll be vindicated."