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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 October, 2003, 10:51 GMT 11:51 UK
Trintignant lover wins slur case
Marie Trintignant
Marie Trintignant died of massive head wounds
A book on the life of French actress Marie Trintignant, labelling her boyfriend a "murderer", must carry an insert declaring his presumed innocence, a court has ruled.

Lawyers for rock singer Bertrand Cantat acted when Ms Trintignant's mother, Nadine, used the term "murderer" repeatedly in a book about her daughter's death.

Ms Trintignant died after suffering severe head injuries at a Lithuanian hotel where she was staying with Mr Cantat.

The editor reminds readers that everyone is presumed innocent until his guilt has been established by a court
Text of book insert demanded by court
He is being held in Lithuania on suspicion of manslaughter. A legal attempt to win his release pending his trial was rejected there on Tuesday.

Nadine Trintignant uses the term "murderer" more than 80 times in her book, "Ma fille, Marie".

Mr Cantat is not referred to by name, but his lawyers argued that his right to be presumed innocent had been undermined.

The Paris appeals court ruled that the slip inserted into the book must stress that suspects are innocent until proved guilty.

Publisher Atheme Fayard was given 48 hours to insert the declaration into all stocks of the book. About 136,000 copies of the initial print run of 140,000 are already believed to have been sold.

Bernard Cantat
Cantat said the actress hit her head in row
Mr Cantat, lead singer with Noir Desir (Black Desire), denies murdering Ms Trintignant. He said she fell and hit her head during an argument.

A post-mortem examination showed she suffered multiple head injuries. She lapsed into a deep coma after the incident and was taken back to France where she died on 1 August.

Mr Cantat, who faces a maximum jail term of 15 years if found guilty, is expected to be tried in the coming months.

On Tuesday a court in the capital, Vilnius, agreed to extend the period he can be held in jail, a news agency said.

Lithuanian lawyer Leonas Virginijus Papirtis had requested Mr Cantat's release, promising his client would not leave the country, but the request was denied.

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05 Aug 03  |  Entertainment
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01 Aug 03  |  Europe


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