THOMAS SAMSON via AFP
JUSTICE – More than a year after the complaint filed against her father for sexual violence, the eldest daughter of actor Richard Berry, Coline Berry-Rojtman, was sentenced this Thursday, April 14 by the Aurillac court for defamation of her ex- mother-in-law Jeane Manson.
Coline Berry-Rojtman’s lawyer, Karine Shebabo, immediately announced to AFP that she was appealing this decision: “My client is appalled. The parents, aggressors and known, have a bright future ahead of them”.
On February 14, 2021, in an article published by The worldColine Berry-Rojtman evoked sexual violence that she allegedly suffered as a minor in 1984 and 1985 at the home of her father who was then living with Jeane Manson, accused of having participated with him in these attacks.
The 71-year-old former singer had decided to sue her ex-daughter-in-law for defamation in court in Aurillac, in Cantal, where she lives part of the year.
The court agreed with him and sentenced Coline Berry-Rojtman, 46, to a fine of 2,000 euros for defamation following this article and the television program “Le Live BFM”, in which she claimed that Jeane Manson was part of the Children of God sect.
The actor’s daughter will also have to pay 20,000 euros in damages to her former mother-in-law, as well as 5,000 euros in legal costs. Also implicated, the journalists of the World and the daily, however, were not condemned.
During the hearing, on April 1, the prosecutor had not asked for a conviction against Le Monde, considering that the newspaper had acted in good faith, and had relied on the court for the rest.
“It is a dismaying decision, of great violence, and a bad signal sent to the children”, declared Thursday Me Shebabo, deploring that this judgment comes while the investigation into the facts is still in progress.
For his part, Me Jacques Verdier, Jeane Manson’s lawyer, welcomed to AFP “an important victory which washes away the affront and the slander of which his client was the victim”.
Absent from the court, the singer “is happy with this decision. She is a good woman, who was attacked unfairly,” he added.
Born in 1976 from the union between Richard Berry and actress Catherine Hiegel, Coline Berry-Rojtman filed a complaint on January 25, 2021 for “rape and sexual assault on a minor”, triggering the same day the opening of a preliminary investigation. by the Paris prosecutor’s office.
Richard Berry, 71, totally denies, as does Jeane Manson. “Everything is false. They are unfortunately lies and she, I think, ended up believing them. It’s heartbreaking for a father. I have no attraction for children. I am deeply, frankly, desperate,” the actor said while testifying at the bar on April 1.
“I didn’t want to file a complaint because she’s my daughter. I wanted to testify to support Jeane Manson”, he explained. The defense lawyers had pleaded the impossibility of judging defamation, while the facts are the subject of an investigation, but the court had not followed them.
During the trial, Richard Berry’s daughter had repeated her statements to Le Monde about the sexual games that her father would have led, sometimes in the presence of Jeane Manson.
She had also mentioned “kisses on the mouth with the tongue”, saying that she had “knew only that”. “She lies (…). Since she was ten years old, everyone has called her the mytho”, replied Jeane Manson, qualifying the article from the World of “so despicable, so ugly lie”.
The very long hearing was marked by a rare incident: Richard Berry’s current companion, Pascale Louage, got up and slapped Coline Berry-Rojtman, according to testimonies collected by AFP. Her lawyer filed a complaint.
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