French Judge Opens Probe into Total Ops in Iran

PARIS, Dec 19, 2006 (Dow Jones Newswires)

The Paris' prosecutor office has opened a probe into French oil company Total SA (TOT) as part of a wider investigation into alleged commissions paid by the group in Iran, a judicial source said Tuesday.

French investigating judges Philippe Courroye and Xaviere Simeoni have been named to lead the probe, the source said.

A spokeswoman for Total declined to comment on the probe.

Total is in talks with Iran to develop part of the giant South Pars gas field in the Persian Gulf.

Only a few foreign oil majors, notably Total and Eni SpA (E) of Italy, are now doing business with Iran.

Copyright (c) 2006 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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