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French Court Bans Publication Of Topless Kate Photos, Possible Jail Time For Photog And Editor



PARIS - A French court has blocked the future publication by a French magazine of the now infamous topless photos of Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, reports the BBC.

The court order prevents French magazine Closer’s publisher, Silvio Berlusconi-owned Mondadori, from “selling, distributing the photos by any means, on any support, to whoever and in any way, including notably on digital tablets,” says Europe 1.

The magazine, which faces a 10,000-euro fine for every breach, will also have to hand the sunbathing photos back to Middleton within the next 24 hours.

According to French daily Libération, the court, however, said that they could not stop Closer from reediting the issue containing the topless pictures.

Kate and Wills have won their injunction case in France. No more naughty topless pictures thank you! digitalspy.co.uk/showbiz/news/a…

— Digital Spy (@digitalspy) September 18, 2012

The ruling only affects the French publisher, not the Irish Daily Star and the Italian magazine CHI, also owned by Mondadori, which both published the photos. Irish Daily Star Editor, Michael O’Kane was suspended following the publication while an internal investigation into his decision to publish the photographs take place, reports Channel 4 news. The newspaper has been under threat of closure since publishing the pictures, but the Guardian says Irish shareholders have been trying to walk the paper “back from the edge.”

According to the Guardian, the decision to publish has threatened the end of self-regulation of Irish newspapers with the justice minister Alan Shatter threatening privacy legislation. He said the publication of the pictures was down to "perceived financial gain" and not "principled freedom of expression" and a belief by certain sections of the print media that "public figures are fair game." He declared he was going to revisit the 2006 privacy bill.

Meanwhile the Editor of Chi magazine defended the publication of the topless pictures, telling Sky News he had done nothing illegal and wanted to show how the Royal family in Britain had modernized.

“Find le rat” titled the Sun on Tuesday, saying the snapper who took the photos should be hunted down to face jail. The photographer, Valerie Suau, an experienced photographer in her 40s, could face a year in jail along with Closer’s editor.

On Monday, the French court said they were beginning a preliminary investigation to see if there were grounds for criminal charges, reports the BBC. The decision follows a formal complaint by the royals to prosecutors, with aides saying they were pursuing proceedings against both the magazine and the photographer who took the pictures.

The Royal couple is on a tour of Southeast Asia and the South Pacific. Yesterday, reports the New York Daily News the Duchess of Cambridge did her best to maintain her composure while negotiating a highly awkward moment.

Middleton and Prince William were welcomed to the village of Marau, in the Solomon Islands, by a group of topless women, draped in the island’s traditional garb, who presented the couple with garlands to wear during their visit.

The move seemed to amuse the Duchess, who laughed and covered her face.

Duchess of Cambridge, queen of the South Seas, greeted by bare-chested Solomon islanders tgr.ph/PJM49o

— Daily Telegraph News (@TelegraphNews) September 17, 2012

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Kleptomania, How A "Women's Pathology" Was Built On Gender And Class Bias

Between 1880 and 1930, there was a significant rise in thefts in department stores, mostly committed by women from the middle and upper classes. This situation brought with it the establishment of a new pathology: kleptomania. A century later, feminist historians have given new meaning to the practice as a protest against the social structures and oppressions of capitalism and patriarchy.

Photo of a hand in a pocket

A hand in a pocket

Julia Amigo

Kleptomania is defined as the malicious and curious propensity for theft. The legal language tends to specify that the stolen objects are not items of necessity; medically, it is explained as an uncontrollable impulse.

What seems clear is that kleptomania is a highly enigmatic condition and one of the few mental disorders that comes from the pathologization of a crime, which makes it possible to use it as a legal defense. It differs from the sporadic theft of clothing, accessories, or makeup (shoplifting) as the kleptomaniac's impulse is irresistible.

Studies have shown that less than one percent of the population suffers from kleptomania, being much more common among women (although determining exact numbers is very difficult).

The psychiatric disorders manual, DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) has included kleptomania since 1962. Previously, it had already received attention from, among others, Sigmund Freud. Like nymphomania or hysteria, kleptomania became an almost exclusively female diagnosis linked to the biology of women's bodies and an “inability” to resist uncontrollable desire.

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