The LFI candidate for the presidential election had called journalists from France Info “morons” and “liars”.
Jean-Luc Mélenchon was sentenced on Tuesday January 11 for public insult and defamation for having called journalists from France Info “besotted” and of “liarsafter an investigation by Radio France’s investigation cell into his 2017 presidential campaign.
The leader of rebellious France and presidential candidate next April has been sentenced to a suspended fine of 500 euros and will have to pay 3000 euros in damages to Radio France. His lawyer, Me Matthieu Davy, indicated that he would appeal this decision. “We are surprised by such a harsh decision against the freedom of expression of a political leader“, did he declare.
Jean-Luc Mélenchon was prosecuted by Radio France for remarks made in a video published on his Facebook profile on October 19, 2018, after the same day broadcast on France Info of part of an investigation by the investigation cell into his communication consultant, Sophia Chikirou, director of the consulting company Mediascop. That day, the latter was heard in police custody as part of an investigation by the Paris prosecutor’s office on suspicion of overcharging for this campaign. Three days earlier, searches had been carried out, in particular at the home of Jean-Luc Mélenchon.
In his video, Jean-Luc Mélenchon had lambasted “perfect synchronization“according to him between the police, justice, the Elysée and the media and estimated to be the subject of a”ramming“. “France Info journalists are liars, are cheaters“, he had declared. “They look like what they are, that is to say morons. Rot them wherever you can“, he also launched.
“A very satisfying decision»
During the hearing on November 10 before the 17th chamber of the Paris Criminal Court, Jacques Monin, director of the investigation unit of Radio France, cited as a witness, had told the “great excitement“Provoked by this statement among journalists, believing that these remarks had contributed to fueling”the defianceto the press. He explained that the date of publication of the investigation had been scheduled two months earlier, and not in response to the searches and the custody of Sophia Chikirou.
“This is a very satisfying decision not only for Radio France, but for all journalists“, welcomed Tuesday Me Sabrina Goldman, lawyer of the public radio. “She recognizes that Jean-Luc Mélenchon could not call for hatred with impunity and enshrined the right to freedom to inform“.
SEE ALSO – Presidential 2022: Jean-Luc Mélenchon calls for an express reform of sponsorships