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Reforms made after man convicted for waving a satirical placard

Eon v. France  | 2013

Reforms made after man convicted for waving a satirical placard

It is astonishing that this man was arrested and charged.

Dominique Noguères, lawyer of the applicant, reported by Ouest France - © Photo Bati Raporu

Background

In February 2008 President Sarkozy said the words “Casse toi pov’con” (“Get lost, you sad prick”) to a farmer who had refused to shake his hand. The phrase circulated widely on the internet and became a slogan in demonstrations.

In August 2008 Hervé Eon waved a placard at the President, bearing the words “Casse toi pov’con”. Mr Eon was convicted of insulting the President of France, and given a suspended fine.

Judgment of the European Court of Human Rights

Mr Eon had been prosecuted and convicted for waving a satirical placard. The court ruled that this had violated Mr Eon’s right to free speech. 

Follow-up

In August 2013 the offence of insulting the President of France was abolished. Mr Eon was able to reopen the criminal proceedings that were brought against him.

Additional information