In a hearing today, disgraced designer John Galliano told the Paris High Court that he was so lost in substance abuse that he “had no recollection” of the anti-Semitic outburst on February 24 that cost him his job at Dior.
The designer, who appeared noticeably thin, appeared unadorned in the court, wearing a dark jacket, leather pants, loose hair and his trademark pencil-thin mustache. In claiming “a triple addiction to alcohol, sleeping pills and Valium” dating back to 2007, the designer delivered his expected line of defense.
The designer then cited the increasing pressures of his job, noting that for every creative high there was a crash, and drinking helped him cope. When a video of his rant was screened, the designer said that he did not recognize himself and that he needed help.
Galliano stands accused by two women, one whom he insulted in February, and another whom he insulted in October 2010, an incident which was captured on video and published by The Sun. If found guilty, Galliano faces a fine of up to 22,000 euros and six months jail time, although most experts consider the latter scenario unlikely.
Museum curator Géraldine Bloch, a plaintiff, seeks symbolic damages of 1 euro and publication of the court’s decision in French editions of Elle and Vogue, as well as the country’s largest newspaper, Le Figaro. Through her lawyer, Bloch let it be known that she is not interested in financial compensation, but rather public acknowledgement and a show of contrition.