Leader of the French leftist party La France Insoumise (LFI) and member of parliament Jean-Luc Melenchon speaks during a session of questions to the government at the French National Assembly in Paris on October 17, 2018. AFP / Eric FEFERBERG
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The leader of the France Unbowed party has drawn a torrent of criticism over Tuesday's outburst, with ruling party members and several newspapers accusing him of placing himself above the law.The first standoff occurred when officers arrived at Melenchon's Paris apartment at dawn and began combing it for evidence in two investigations one into the party's use of European Parliament funds, the other into the funding of Melenchon's 2017 presidential campaign.Things got more heated later at the party's headquarters, which was also searched by police.France Unbowed official Manuel Bompard said the party had filed a countercomplaint for police violence causing the injury of four people. In one video, a policeman could be seen wrestling a party member to the floor.The leader of the centrist Modem party Francois Bayrou stressed that it was not unusual for a French party, including his own, to be raided by police.
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