Frenchwoman in Mexico jail gets Trierweiler gift

French President Francois Hollande's partner Valérie Trierweiler has sent a care package to jailed Frenchwoman Florence Cassez, who is serving a 60-year sentence for kidnapping in a Mexican prison, Trierweiler's office said Monday.

Trierweiler sent Cassez books, chocolates and beauty products, and plans to send similar packages on a regular basis, her office said.

Cassez's case has caused diplomatic tension between France and Mexico since she was arrested and jailed in 2005.

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy brought national attention to the case, irritating Mexican authorities who had hailed it as a successful arrest in a country plagued by kidnapping.

For his part, Hollande has called Cassez several times in prison and met with her parents at the Elysee palace.

Cassez, 37, maintains she is innocent and has launched an appeal.

In March 2012 the Mexican Supreme Court ruled against her immediate release, but said it would continue to review her case. A panel of five justices ruled 3-2 against releasing Cassez immediately, but four also said her rights had been violated.

Mexican president-elect Enrique Pena Nieto, who was elected in June but will be inaugurated December 1, is tentatively scheduled to visit France on October 17th. New administrations in the two countries could lead to new movement in the case.

Cassez and her ex-boyfriend Israel Vallarta were arrested in December 2005 in a "live" televised raid on a ranch to free three kidnap victims.

The raid actually took place hours after the suspects were detained elsewhere.

But the attorney general's office has stood by its prosecution of Cassez for organized crime, kidnapping and weapons possession.

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Hollande’s camp furious over Trierweiler movie

The prospect of a film adaptation of Valérie Trierweiler’s tell-all memoir, Thank You for This Moment, has sparked anger among those close to the French president.

Hollande's camp furious over Trierweiler movie
Photo: AFP

Many of President François Hollande's aides and closest friends confessed their anger on Tuesday at the prospect of Trierweiler's book being made into a movie.

“The nightmare goes on,” one of his advisers told Le Parisien newspaper. “I nearly fell off my chair,” said another one.

Hollande would have learnt the "nightmare" news of the film via a press release on Monday, but the Elysée palace has yet to officially comment on it.

Trierweiler's memoir lays bare the turbulent, six-year relationship she had with Hollande, including 18 months by his side after he became president in 2012.

It portrays France's unpopular Socialist head of state as a callous egotist and claimed he tried to win her back "as if she was an election" after the scandal of his affair with French actress Julie Gayet broke in January last year.

The prospect of Trierweiler’s relationship and then messy break-up with Hollande being portrayed on the big screen is the final straw for many in the president's camp.

“The fact that she has written a book is alright because she needed to move on, but agreeing to a movie [is something else]!” said one angry aide.

While Hollande's aides are fretting about the movie, the president himself is pretty unperturbed about the whole affair, according to one his frequent visitors to the palace.

“He is a tower of strength,” said one of his frequent visitors.

Trierweiler, 49, who works for French magazine Paris Match, has already earned more than 1.3 million euros ($1.5 million) in France alone from her book, according to her publisher. It remains in the top three books being sold in France.

Film director Saida Jawad, who has vowed the film would not be controversial, said Trierweiler would have final say over the film.

Could she also have the final world on the casting of her own character?

Speculation is already under way and several names have been suggested: Carole Bouquet, Sophie Marceau… and what about Julie Gayet?

Some seem to have made some guesses already.

“It would be a scoop if she asks Julie Gayet to play herself!” mocked a friend of the president, according to the Le Parisien.