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Ex-Teacher Who Mixed With Mobsters Blames Tax Scam on Dead Men

  • Investigators admit in court they lost track of $191 million
  • Woman at center says she just laundered money in CO2 scandal
Buildings are nestled into the mountainside in the town of Corte, northern Corsica

Photographer: Alastair Miller/Bloomberg

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An ex-math teacher turned Marseilles piano-bar manager who claimed links to Corsica’s underworld allegedly spearheaded a 385 million-euro ($478 million) tax scam and spent part of the proceeds on Beverly Hills real estate.

A day before the cross-examination of Christiane Melgrani, 59, was set to begin at her trial in Paris investigators admitted that they’ve lost track of nearly half the money. She denies the charge of being a ringleader in the biggest part of scams involving taxes on carbon-emissions permits that’s cost the French about $2 billion, blaming two dead men instead.