Insulting the French President

 French president takes voodoo doll makers to court



22nd October
2008
  

Sticking Pins in Sarkozy...

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French president gets wound up by voodoo doll

Sarkozy voodoo doll French President Nicolas Sarkozy has threatened to sue a publishing company unless it withdraws a Sarkozy doll that comes with a voodoo manual telling readers to plant pins in it.

The doll is emblazoned with some of Sarkozy's most famous quotes such as Get lost you pathetic arsehole -- his words to a bystander who refused to shake his hand at a farm show last year.

Readers are encouraged to plant pins in the quotes.
Sarkozy

Nicolas Sarkozy has instructed me to remind you that, whatever his status and fame, he has exclusive and absolute rights over his own image, his lawyer Thierry Herzog wrote to publishers K&B in a letter published by newspaper Le Monde.

Herzog said Sarkozy would sue the publishing firm if it didn't respond and pull the product. K&B has issued 20,000 copies of the manual and doll.

 

30th October
2008
  

Update: Court Sticks Pins into Sarkozy...

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French president pained by the decision

Sarkozy voodoo doll A French court has rejected a demand from Nicolas Sarkozy, the president, for a ban on a Sarkozy doll and voodoo manual that encourages readers to stick pins in it.

The doll is decorated with some of the French leader's most famous quotes, like Get lost you pathetic a***hole to a bystander who refused to shake his hand at an agricultural show in 2007.

Update: Undignified

29th November 2008. See article from thescotsman.scotsman.com

A doll representing the French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, and an accompanying voodoo manual with directions for sticking pins into the figurine can remain on sale, a court has ruled but it must carry a notice saying it harms the president's dignity.

The court ruled that the kit constituted an offence against the personal dignity of Sarkozy. But it said it would be disproportionate and harmful to liberty of expression to ban their sale outright.

It ruled the doll may be sold provided it carries a notice of the judgment attached. The manufacturers must also pay the costs of the case as well as a symbolic 1 Euro in damages.

 

 Update: OK to tell the President to get lost...

France repeals law insulting the French people


Link Here 27th July 2013  full story: Insulting the French President...French president takes voodoo doll makers to court

french senateFrance has changed a law in response to a controversial conviction of man who held up a sign telling then-president Nicolas Sarkozy to get lost.

Being rude to the French president is now no longer an offence after parliament amended legislation dating back to 1881 in favour of freedom of speech. Previously any rude remark risked a fine and criminal conviction for "offending the head of state". But the change was pushed through after criticism from the European court of human rights. It is not a carte blanche to bad mouth the president though, laws of libel and defamation still apply.

Hervé Eon was arrested after holding up a sign as Sarkozy's motorcade drove past in 2008. The small A4-sized cardboard sign did not feature Sarkozy's name but said simply: Casse-toi pov'con", translated as : get lost you prat. The phrase had been uttered by Sarkozy months earlier when a man refused to shake his hand at an agricultural fair, causing media outrage at his non-presidential language and demeanour. It later became a widely used political slogan against the president used by the left on stickers and posters.

The French state prosecutor brought a case against Eon for offence against a head of state, and he was ordered to pay a symbolic fine of ?30 Euro and given a criminal conviction. But European human rights court judges found the sign was of a satirical nature and ruled it did not warrant a criminal conviction.