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Far-right French presidential contender convicted, fined for hate speech

French far-right presidential candidate Éric Zemmour is convicted of inciting racial hatred over 2020 comments he made about unaccompanied migrant children.

A Paris court ordered Zemmour to pay a fine of 10,000 euros (more than $11,000) and several thousand euros in damages to anti-racist groups.

Zemmour, who has two prior hate speech convictions, went on trial in November on charges of “public insult” and “incitement to hatred or violence” against a group of people because of their ethnic, national, racial or religious origin.

French far-right media pundit Eric Zemmour poses prior to a televised debate in Paris, on September 23, 2021. (Bertrand Guay, Pool Photo via AP)

The former TV pundit, who is running in April’s presidential election, is drawing fervent audiences with his anti-Islam, anti-immigration invective. He is considered among the major challengers to centrist President Emmanuel Macron, who is seen as the front-runner, according to polls. Macron has yet to confirm he will run for a second term.

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