Bettencourt, France's richest woman, is not going quietly. Daughter Francoise has claimed that her mother is unfit to handle her $20bn after Bettancourt gave photographer Francois-Marie Banier over a billion dollars' worth of gifts; she's also suing Banier for taking advantage of the aging woman. Now, Maman is suing right back: this time for "moral violence."
In addition to their familial battles, the family's involved in an illegal political-donations scandal that implicates President Sarkozy. You'd think they'd want to minimize litigation where they can — but at this point, Francoise has tried three times to have her mother made a ward of court, and Bettancourt's lawyers claim the repeated attempts "amount to a psychological violence." Talk about fighting fire with fire.