Bruni stalker breaks into Sarkozy holiday home

A stalker sparked a security alert at the holiday home of Carla Bruni-Sarkozy after he managed to break into the house of the former French first lady. The incident was revealed just a day after Nicolas Sarkozy was criticised for the cost of his summer security detail.

Bruni stalker breaks into Sarkozy holiday home
Carla Bruni Sarkozy and her husband Nicolas on holiday. Photo: Jean-Paul Pelissier/AFP

The stalker, a German national, who was already known to the police in Germany, managed to get past security and into the Bruni-Sarkozy summer residence at Cap Negre on the Mediterranean coast, French newspaper Le Figaro reports.

Le Figaro cites a source from France's Ministry of Interior, who described the stalker, who has a history of petty crime, as being mentally “unstable”.

The source said the intruder wanted to “meet” the ex-head of state’s wife "at any cost" and described him as "insistant".

"He would have been able to get to Mme Sarkozy or her child, but luckily he was stopped in time,” a separate source from Sarkozy's law firm told Le Figaro.

The former president was not actually told about the incident, which happened last week, until a few days later.

The head of the Var police, Laurent Cayrel, was forced to explain to Sarkozy how the break in could have happened. The former president reportedly responded by sarcastically asking whether the police station was closed for the holidays.

Embarrassed by the break-in, the Ministry of Interior was forced to step in and contacted Sarkozy directly to discuss the incident.

Only on Monday Sarkozy was criticised in the French media for the cost of his summer security detail. The former president came under fire in an article published in Monday's Le Parisien.

The daily reports that in addition to the 10 specialist security guards that accompany the former president at all times, five teams of three police officers (CRS) have the job of keeping a round-the-clock watch on the Cap Nègre property while the couple are on holiday.

Paris Match magazine claimed the estimated cost of Sarkozy’s security runs to €720,000 annually.

Sarkozy immediately hit back at the criticism in a press release, claiming that he “receives the same treatment as all other former presidents of the Republic.”

He insisted the level of security provided to a former president is not decided by the person under protection but rather according to guidelines laid out by the Ministry of the Interior.

Judging by the incident at the Cap Nègre holiday home, the high level of security may indeed be necessary, if not always completely effective.

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Carla Bruni fails to woo fans in North America

French singer Carla Bruni may draw crowds in France but it would appear her talents are failing to excite on the other side of the Atlantic. The former first lady has cancelled two legs of her upcoming North America tour after reports of poor ticket sales.

Carla Bruni fails to woo fans in North America
Carla Bruni Sarkozy performs during a charity show to help Alzheimer scientific research in September in Paris. Photo: Eric Feferberg/AFP

France's former first lady, singer Carla Bruni has cancelled two upcoming performances in Canada, her agent confirmed on Tuesday.

Bertrand de Labbey said two concerts in Canada had been cancelled after the Italian-French model-turned-singer, who is married to former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, asked for her schedule to be "lightened".

Canadian newspaper the Ottawa Citizen, however, reported that ticket sales for one of the concerts had been disappointing.

According to the paper, only 100 tickets have been sold for her concert booked for April 23rd at the Casino du Lac Leamy in Gatineau, western Québec.

Bruni may have one consolation, though. Franco-Belgian singer Lara Fabian was also forced to cancel a concert at the same venue, the Canadian paper reported.

The pop singer cancelled the event due to “hearing problems”, despite the fact that 85 percent of tickets to the performance had already been sold. 

Bruni, meanwhile, will now perform in New York, Los Angeles and Montreal on the North American leg of her tour.

The 46-year-old made her stage comeback in November with a concert to promote her fourth album, "Little French Songs".

The former model, who is married to former French president Nicholas Sarkozy, continues to hit headlines in France, albeit indirectly. 

In December, Chinese hackers broke into the computers of several European diplomats during a G20 meeting in Paris, using the promise of naked pictures of Bruni. According to US-based internet security firm FireEye, the X-rated bait reportedly worked on "almost everybody".

READ: 'Nude Carla Bruni pics dupe Euro diplomats