Prosecutors in Germany have asked the federal parliament to lift President Christian Wulff's immunity over an escalating home loan scandal.
The prosecutors in Lower Saxony, where Wulff was previously premier, said there is an initial suspicion that he improperly accepted benefits.
He has also been accused of trying to bully a newspaper not to run the story.
The president - whose primary role is to serve as a moral authority for the nation - denies any wrongdoing.
The widening row is seen by analysts as a blow to Chancellor Angela Merkel, who helped Wulff to secure the largely ceremonial office in 2010.