JUNE 18 2015 16:53h

French court dismisses Croat action against Rolling Stone

Bob Dylan

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A lawsuit filed by the Council of Croats in France (CRICCF) against the French edition of Rolling Stone magazine in 2012 over an interview with Bob Dylan, in which that American singer compared Croats to Nazis, has been dismissed due to legal formalities, French media outlets have reported.

The Croat organisation submitted the lawsuit in late 2012 for incitement to racial hatred.

The legal action was prompted by Dylan's statement that "if you got a slave master or Klan in your blood, blacks can sense that. That stuff lingers to this day. Just like Jews can sense Nazi blood and the Serbs can sense Croatian blood," Dylan was quoted as saying in an answer to a question about racial relations in the United States.

In 2014, a court in Paris dismissed the case against Dylan explaining that the 72-year-old musician had not given his consent for his comments to be published in the French-language edition of Rolling Stone, which was the basis of CRICCF's complaint.

The court then ordered the director of the magazine's French edition to stand trial over the charges and transferred the case to a misdemeanour court.

According to the latest ruling, the CRICCF action could not be admitted as the association makes no mention in its statute that it fights against discrimination, racism or hate speech, which under French law is a precondition for an organisation to launch proceedings of this kind.