By Le Figaro with AFP
The 44-year-old artist called for “starting the club of rapist athletes” in reference to Wilfried Hoppio, then in police custody for ault. The complaint has since been dismissed.
The Caen judicial court sentenced the director on Thursday September 7 Andrea Bescond to a fine and damages for defamation against an athlete who had been taken into custody for ault, we learned from reliable sources.
On December 20, 2022, Andréa Bescond wrote in one of her “black posts» where she denounces violence by men against women on social networks: “You are Wilfried Happio. You are a professional athlete. You’re in custody on charges of ault. We will be able to set up the club of rapist athletes (…)“.
“Justice does not happen on social networks”
For this publication, the author of the piece “Tickles or the dance of anger» was fined “2,000 euros suspended, 1,500 euros in damages and reimburt of lawyers’ fees», Specified his lawyer Marie Grimaud. She said an appeal would be filed in the coming days.
Mr. Happio’s lawyer, Me Anthony Mottais, said:satisfied with this judgment, regardless of Ms. Bescond’s guilt. Above all, he reminds us that justice does not come to social networks through peremptory ertions, in this case that Mr. Happio is a rapist even though he has never been brought before a court“.
Me Grimaud understands this decision “not as a guilt of defamation but a condemnation of black posts» from his client. The debates have “been very focused on his personality, his other posts, his vision of justice, it is a moral lesson on the excellence of the work that justice can do“, she said.
“As a specialist lawyer, I am shocked by the amount of damages of 1,500 euros, which is usually what is awarded as moral damage to parents of child victims of ault.“, she added.
The complaint filed at the end of June 2022 by an international athlete who targeted Wilfried Happio, 400m hurdles specialist and medal hope at the Paris Olympic Games in 2024, was dismissed in June 2023.
The complainant denounced touching in September 2021 at the National Institute of Sport, Expertise and Performance (Insep), which had not sanctioned Mr. Happio after an internal investigation. He himself filed a complaint after being hit in the face on June 25, 2022 in Caen during the French Athletics Championships by the complainant’s brother.