IMF chief Christine Lagarde to stand trial over payout

Christine Lagarde is accused of negligence. Credit: Reuters

International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde is to stand trial for her role in a £336 million payout to a businessman.

Mrs Lagarde is accused of negligence by improperly signing off on the decision to allow an out-of-court arbitration in a dispute between Bernard Tapie, a supporter of former president Nicolas Sarkozy, and the state in 2008. She was French finance minister at the time.

Mrs Lagarde had appealed against a judge's order for her to stand trial, but France's highest appeals court has ruled she must now do so.

Arbitration judges ruled in Mr Tapie's favour and ordered the state payout to him, but appeals courts have since thrown out the settlement decision.