Twilight Of A Czar

Alcatel Alsthom Chief Executive Pierre Suard hurries down a flight of stairs to the courtyard of an elegant Paris apartment house. Like royalty in exile, he is courteous but ill at ease as he ushers a visitor into a formal salon where soft spring light plays on richly upholstered furniture. Until he was barred from executing his duties by a French court on Mar. 10, Suard reigned over the world's largest maker of telecommunications equipment. The stillness now surrounding the secluded CEO is eerie. Although he's still Alcatel's chief, Suard is forbidden contact with the company pending the conclusion of corruption investigations that target him and the entire corporation.

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