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Case detail

B a c k

Directive article Article 5 4.
Article 6 1.
National ID #09/00010
Country France Decision date 20/10/2009
Common name Decision type Court decision in appeal
Court Cour d'appel de Montpellier, Chambre correctionnelle 03 Plaintiff(s) French State
Court translation Court of appeals (Montpellier) Correctional Chamber # 3 Defendant(s) SARL GRAND SUD AVICOLE, SARL GRAND SUD AVICOLE and SARL NATURE"UF
Subject misleading statements
Keywords advertisementfalse informationlabellingmisleading advertisingmisleading statements

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Headnote

The offense of false or misleading advertisements (as referred to in articles L. 121-1-1, L. 121-1 and L. 121-5 of the French Consumer Code) is present when there has been a repeated number of false allegations that could not be considered as mere errors or negligence, but instead as a deliberate intent to mislead the consumer.

Facts

A company producing eggs from hens raised in battery was inspected by the French consumer protection authority, which found several violations, including allegations of misleading advertising, particularly in respect of product traceability and quality (claiming the "Label Rouge" quality label).

Legal issue

Do repeated false product claims amount to the offense of false or misleading advertisements? 

Decision

The court recalled that the repetition of fraudulent practices may in no event be considered as mere error or negligence, but instead amounts to deliberate intent to fraudulently deceive consumers by claiming the "Label Rouge" quality label whereas the eggs in question did not qualify for this label.

Articles L. 115-24, L. 121-1 and L. 121-1-1 of the French Consumer Code were therefore found to be violated. These articles are intended to allow a potential consumer to decide on the quality of a product offered for sale.

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Result

The claim was denied.

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