Former Dior head John Galliano has been found guilty in a Paris courtroom of “public insults based on origin, religious affiliation, race or ethnicity” after the designer was filmed hurling several epithets at fellow diners in an establishment in the city earlier this year.
Galliano could have faced maximum penalties of six months in jail and fines of $32,175, but the court took into consideration the fact that he’d apologized for the offensive rants as well as taken steps to address his admitted issues with alcohol and drugs including Valium in determining sentencing. The judge indicated a belief that Galliano had “sufficient awareness of his act despite his addiction and his fragile state,” but noted his “values of tolerance” when deciding the designer’s fate.
Directly following the March incident, lawyers for Galliano released a statement on the designer’s behalf. The statement read in part:
“I fully accept that the accusations made against me have greatly shocked and upset people… I only have myself to blame and I know that I must face up to my own failures and that I must work hard to gain people’s understanding and compassion.”
“I have fought my entire life against prejudice, intolerance and discrimination having been subjected to it myself. In all my work my inspiration has been to unite people of every race, creed, religion and sexuality by celebrating their cultural and ethnic diversity through fashion. That remains my guiding light.”
Galliano’s remarks were an extreme contrast to his earlier, videotaped tirade- during which he professed to “love Hitler” and told a table of fellow patrons that in the past “people like [them] would be… gassed.”