Disgraced fashion designer John Galliano has today been convicted of using anti-Semitic and racist language. The 50-year-old was found guilty of “casting public insults based on origin, religious affiliation, race or ethnicity” following the two incident in a Paris bar earlier this year.
Galliano had faced a jail term of around six months however instead he has received a suspended fine of 6000 euros.
The shamed star who has been sacked from his job as chief fashion designer at Dior for the comments, was not at the Palais de Justice in Paris to hear the verdict. During the day-long trial back in June he said that he had been drinking champagne and taking Valium pills “like they were candy” on the day that he accused museum curator Geraldine Bloch of having a “dirty Jewish face”.
Galliano’s charge sheet was made up of the attack on Ms Bloch which happened in February of this year and another incident which happened in October 2010. Video footage was also shown as evidence.
Today’s frankly non-surprising verdict comes after a well-known paper exposed a video of Galliano’s anti-Semitic tirades from February in which you hear him insulting a couple at the restaurant.
Despite Galliano’s claims that he was innocent of every charge, judges in the case said that his outbursts had become common during his drinking binges. Trouble broke out in La Perle, a bar in the Marais district of Paris on 24th February when Galliano insulted Miss Bloch.
She said that she suffered a full 45-minute tirade during which Galliano also accused her of having “revolting eyebrows, low-end boots and low-end thighs.” Miss Bloch’s partner Philippe Virgitti intervened and was himself called “a dirty Asian shit” before Galliano implied that the Frenchman was an “illegal immigrant”.
Galliano, speaking of the incident, told the courts he could only remember Mr Virgitti preparing to attack him and then police arriving. Asked if he recognised the words attributed to him, he replied “I can’t remember. I have no idea, I’m afraid.”
The first incident, which occurred in October last year, was at the same bar and involved Fatiha Oumeddour. She was not in court but told police she had been called a “F****** ugly dirty Jewish bastard”. After the allegations had been made a video emerged of Galliano telling two Italian women their forebears should have be “gassed” and then remarked “I love Hitler.”
Aurelien Hamelle, Galliano’s lawyer, told the court “Some things may have come out of his mouth that didn’t come from his brain.”
The video was played in court and Galliano himself said “They’re not views I hold or believe in. In the video I see someone who needs help. All my life I have fought against prejudice and discrimination, having been subjected to it myself. These are not the sentiments of John Galliano.”
What do you think the sentence he has been given? Do you think it is just and fair? Or do you think he isn’t getting the full force of the law due to who he is?
Let us know your views below.