Tue Feb 27th, 2007 at 04:52:15 AM EST
In 2001, a small press French publisher L'esprit Frappeur put out a book entitled VOS PAPIERS! QUE FAIRE FACE A LA POLICE written by a lawyer member of the left-wing legal organization Syndicat de la Magistrateur on the subject of how to deal with various abuses of power by the French Police.
Immediately, the Mintre de l'Interieur of the then-Socialist Lionel Jospin government sued the Publisher, the writer and the cover artist (!) being accused of defaming and/or insulting the Police.
The lawsuit was later actively continued by the present ministry of right-wing Nicolas Sarkozy -- the same man who recently expressed his support to the Philippe Val, the editor of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in the matter of the Mohammed caricatures, writing: Je préfère l'excès de caricatures à l'absence de caricature [I prefer an excessive caricature to an absence of caricatures].
In 2005, the Lower Court found in favor of the author, cartoonist and publisher, but the State decided to appeal and, last month, the Appellate Court disagreed and condemned the Publisher to pay a fine of 1000 euro, the writer 800 euro and the artist 500 euro.
The writer is appealing to the French supreme court, but the artist is thinking of throwing in the towel.
You can read more details about the case IN FRENCH HERE, read the artist's communiqué and view the allegedly offensive cover art.
French justice and French politicians -- from both sides -- ought to be ashamed.
From the diaries - afew