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Magazine guilty on Trierweiler pics

Judge said VSD invaded the First Lady’s private life by taking bikini shots of her on a private beach

THE magazine VSD has been found guilty by a Paris criminal court of wrongly publishing beach snaps of First Lady Valérie Trierweiler.

However the court awarded only €2,000 in damages rather than the €30,000 she asked for. Ms Trierweiler said she would give the money to campaigning journalists Reporters sans Frontières.

Trierweiler took legal action after the current affairs and entertainment magazine put a photo of her on its cover, showing the president in blue shorts and herself in a plain black bikini, with the caption “even their swimming costumes are normal”.

This was despite the fact she was said to have taken special care to scout out the beach – at the presidential holiday home at Fort de Bregançon – for areas where she expected to be safe from long-distance photo shots.

The judge said: “It wasn’t necessary for legitimate public information to show the president’s partner on the beach of the Fort de Bregançon against her wishes and the pictures can’t be said to be anodyne, notably because they show her in a swimming costume, when she has never accepted to pose for cameras in this kind of outfit.”

The magazine was found to have infringed her image rights and private life.

The judge, Anne-Marie Sauteraud, added that “it can’t be said that the pictures amount to a relevant illustration of the normality asserted by the presidential couple”.

However some allegations by Trierweiler, including that the magazine deliberately tried to harm her with certain editorial remarks, were not accepted. Even if they were “disagreeable” to her, this did not amount to a crime, the judge said.

Another magazine, Paris Match also published similar photos, but not on the cover. Trierweiler did not take action against them, reportedly admitting that, in any case, it is preferable not to sue your employer (she writes a literary column for the magazine).

The publisher of VSD, Philippe Labi, told Le Parisien: “We were surprised to be found guilty over some extremely ordinary photos. They are just holiday photos like we have published of Sarkozy and Carla or the Chiracs, also in swimming costumes. We took care to take respectful ones.”


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