French magazine to remove report on alleged Hollande affair from site

AFP , Friday 10 Jan 2014

The French magazine Closer with photos of French President Francois Hollande and French actress Julie Gayet on its front page, is presented in a newspaper stall on the Champs Elysee Avenue in Paris, Friday Jan. 10, 2013 (Photo: AP)

A French magazine that revealed an alleged affair between President Francois Hollande and actress Julie Gayet said Friday it would remove the report from its website at her request.

"Julie Gayet's lawyer contacted us to request we remove from the website all mention of this relationship," Laurence Pieau, editor of Closer, told AFP.

She gave no specific reason for the order but hinted at privacy issues, adding the information would likely be taken off the site on Friday evening.

Hollande has reacted furiously to the allegation -- which were backed up by photos reportedly showing the 59-year-old president entering Gayet's flat -- but did not deny it, threatening legal action over what he called an attack on his right to privacy.

Pieau however said the magazine had so far had no contact with the French presidency.

France's media is subject to strict laws on invasion of privacy, which can be punished with a year's jail and a fine of 45,000 euros ($61,000).

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