Divisive French comedian Dieudonné given two-year sentence for tax fraud

AFP - [email protected]
Divisive French comedian Dieudonné given two-year sentence for tax fraud
Photos AFP

French comedian Dieudonné, a convicted anti-Semite whose shows the government once tried to shut down, was sentenced to two years in jail for tax fraud and money laundering on Friday by a court in Paris.


The controversial performer, who has also been found guilty of condoning terrorism in the past, has a loyal following in France, particularly in low-income suburban areas of major cities.

The court in Paris handed him a €200,000 ($225,000) fine, as well as the two-year jail sentence, which he is unlikely to serve under arrangements that will allow him to do community service instead.

The trial related to over one million euros of undeclared earnings from the showman, whose full name is Dieudonné M'Bala M'Bala.

Investigators found €657,000 at his home in cash, while he and accomplices sent €565,000 overseas, mainly to Cameroon where he has family roots.

Dieudonné, 53, once invited a Holocaust denier onto stage and rails against the "Zionist lobby" which he claims controls the world, though he claims his right to free speech has been infringed.

He has popularised a hand gesture known as the "quenelle", which was criticised for resembling a Nazi salute.

In 2014, then Socialist prime minister Manuel Valls attempted to get regional authorities to shut down Dieudonne's shows, arguing that they posed a threat to public safety.

The comedian managed to have some of the bans overturned.



Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also