The rock singer who's been linked to the death of French actress MARIE TRINTIGNANT is to be questioned by a judge today (21AUG03).

Bertrand Cantat was arrested after Trintignant was admitted to hospital in Lithuania in a coma suffering head injuries on 27 July (03). She died in Paris five days later (01AUG03).

Cantat, who is currently in custody in Lithuania, will be placed under formal investigation. He's suspected of violence against his girlfriend, and unintentionally causing her death.

Cantat's lawyer OLIVIER METZNER says, "Bertrand is not seeking to evade his responsibilities.

"He never thought that it could end this way. I have the feeling that... his life no longer has any meaning."

Authorities in Lithuania have previously insisted that they will try Cantat - lead singer of rock band NOIR DESIR - before extraditing him to his native France.

But the visit of judge NATHALIE TURQUEY could indicate that they are prepared to release Cantat to be tried in France, according to

BBC correspondents. Under the French legal system, placing Cantat under formal investigation is a step short of pressing charges against him.

The couple were heard arguing in their hotel the evening before Trintignant was taken to hospital (26JUL03).

21/08/2003 17:11