Sarkozy's ex-wife to get 'revenge' by marrying millioniare at Easter


Last updated at 13:01 20 March 2008

Nicolas Sarkozy's ex-wife is this weekend to wed the millionaire lover she had an affair with while she was married to the French president, it emerged today.

Cecilia Ciganer-Albiniz, 50, will marry PR guru Richard Attias in New York this Sunday.

Friends have described the wedding as "revenge" on her ex-husband for marrying Italian model Carla Bruni, 40, just six weeks earlier.

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One told French daily le Figaro: "She feels Sarkozy has embarrassed her by marrying a beautiful former model ten years her junior.

"Her wedding had been planned for this summer, but now seems to have been moved forward."

The former French First Lady walked out on Sarkozy for a three-month fling with Moroccan-born Attias, 48, in the summer of 2005.

But she then dumped Attias and finally returned to Sarkozy's side in the run-up to the French presidential elections last year, before they split up again and divorced last October.

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Sarkozy and Bruni

Upstaged: Carla Bruni with President Sarkozy at the Elysee Palace

Cecilia's wedding would a a "low-key, private affair" with 150 guests, glossy French magazine Point de Vue said.

It added: "The ceremony will take place at a secret city centre location, and be followed by a party.

"Guests will not be allowed to carry cameras, or phones with cameras, to protect their privacy.

"The happy couple will both be wearing Versace, and so apparently will many of the guests."

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The wedding comes after Cecilia admitted feeling humiliated that her ex-husband had married Miss Bruni just three months after their divorce.

She said in a recently published biography that she believed Sarkozy had wed the model-turned-singer on the "rebound".

She also branded the president a "stingy womaniser", and was said to have added: "Carla Bruni won't make him forget me in a hurry."

Sarkozy fuelled the fire in December by giving Miss Bruni an identical engagement ring to the one he had given Cecilia 12 years earlier.

In January, Cecilia then sued a magazine for publishing pictures of her riddled with cellulite alongside images of the beautiful and unflawed Miss Bruni.

Another magazine then claimed Sarkozy had sent Cecilia a text message just a week before his wedding to Bruni reading: "If you come back, I'll call everything off."

Sarkozy denied sending the message and in a bid to quell the feud, Cecilia has now also denied receiving it.

The president this week dropped a lawsuit for libel after the journalist who wrote the story is said to have written a personal letter of apology to Bruni.

The stunning Italian heiress is now trying hard to adopt a more conservative poise befitting a First Lady of France after photos recently appeared of her posing in nothing but black leather thigh boots and a wedding ring.

She has now been pictured posing demurely 'at home' at the Elysee Palace - but even those photos published by Italian magazine Oggi risk enraging Cecilia on the eve of her wedding day, with one shot showing the new First Lady grinning broadly as she perches seductively on the edge of her predecessor's ornate Louis XVI style desk.

Mr Sarkozy and Ms Bruni are due in Britain next week, where they will be guests of the Queen and will spend the night in Windsor Castle.

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