John Galliano trial

John Galliano racial outburst trial to begin

British fashion designer John Galliano is set to stand trial on charges that he hurled anti-Semitic slurs at customers in a Paris cafe.

The trial focuses on two alleged incidents in October and February. A video of a third incident led to Mr Galliano losing his job at Dior.

If convicted, Mr Galliano could face six months in prison and a fine of 22,500 euros (£20,000).

He is expected to argue that he lost control due to substance abuse.

Mr Galliano has repeatedly apologised "unreservedly" for his behaviour and has sought treatment for his addictions.

The 50-year-old was briefly arrested in March after a couple accused him of making anti-Semitic remarks.

Geraldine Bloch, a museum curator, is suing Mr Galliano over what she said was a tirade of anti-Semitic abuse that lasted 45 minutes.

Another woman has made similar accusations about an incident in October.

Galliano is charged with "public insults based on origin, religious affiliation, race or ethnicity".

The designer was sacked by fashion house Dior after footage emerged of a third incident, in which he was shown saying to two women in a cafe, "I love Hitler", and telling them that their parents could have been gassed by the Nazis.

The footage is reportedly to be used as evidence in Monday's one-day trial.

All incidents are alleged to have taken place at La Perle cafe in the Marais district of Paris.

(Published by BBC - June 22, 2011)

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