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Page last updated at 11:16 GMT, Thursday, 18 December 2008

Firm fined for Bruni's nude image

Bag with Carla Bruni's image
The bags have been on sale on the French Indian ocean island of Reunion

A company has been fined 40,000 euros (37,700; $58,500) for selling bags with a nude image of Carla Bruni, wife of French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

A court on the French Indian Ocean island of Reunion ruled that the local firm, Pardon, had violated Ms Bruni's image ownership rights.

Her lawyers had argued the image, which was shot in 1993, was being used by Pardon without Ms Bruni's permission.

They now say the damages will be given to charity. Pardon says it will appeal.

The company earlier said it had withdrawn the bags and would destroy them.

They have been on sale in Reunion at a cost of three euros (2.60), and were due to go on sale in France in the coming days.

The white canvas bag features a black-and-white image of former model Ms Bruni, taken from a well-known 1993 photo of her standing upright in the nude.

An original print of the picture - taken by Swiss-born fashion photographer Michel Comte for an anti-Aids campaign - fetched $91,000 (59,000) at a New York auction in April.

The bags show the naked Ms Bruni with a speech bubble that reads: "My boyfriend should have bought me Pardon."

Ms Bruni had been seeking 125,000 euros in damages from the firm.

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SEE ALSO
Nude image of Carla Bruni sold
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Country profile: France
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