Former Christian Dior designer John Galliano has admitted he is addicted to valium, sleeping tablets and alcohol at his trial in Paris today for allegedly making racist and anti-Semitic comments.
Galliano told a packed Paris courtroom that a combination of work pressure, creative highs and grief had led him to start drinking and taking drugs. He added that he was “still in recovery but feeling much better”.
The designer is accused of subjecting Geraldine Bloch and Philippe Virgitti to what has been described by Bloch’s lawyer as a 45-minute, drink-fuelled tirade of anti-Semitic, racist and personal abuse at a cafe in the Marais district of Paris in February.
After a judge read out his alleged comments, Galliano said he had no recollection of the 45 minutes referred to, which he attributes to his cocktail of addictions.
Following the announcement in February that Bloch and Virgitti would be taking legal action, another plaintiff, Fathia Oumeddour, came forward about the incident in October saying that Galliano insulted her in the same cafe.
Dressed “conservatively” in a black with a polka dot neckerchief, the 50 year old designer faces fine of up to €22,000 (£19,500) and up to six months in prison if he is found guilty.
The trial will hear from five witnesses although it is only expected to last one day. A judgement is not due until the autumn.