The French star of classic cinema faces charges of hate speech and inciting racial hatred following comments she had previously made about islanders on the French-ruled island of Réunion.
The charges came after Ms Bardot labelled the natives on Réunion, “aboriginals who have kept the genes of savages,” and slammed their treatment of animals for religious purposes which includes the sacrifice of goats, dogs, and cats which are killed and beheaded, Il Giornale reports.
Bardot sent her opinion on the practice in the form of a letter to the governing bodies of the island, which lies in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar.
The actress slammed the ceremonies in the letter arguing that they were both “demonic” and showed a degree of “sadism” towards the animals.
Upon receiving the letter, Amaury de Saint-Quentin, prefect of Réunion, pressed the courts to indict the 84-year-old on charges of inciting racial hatred.
After being informed of the charges, Bardot countered by doubling down on her remarks and saying that she would continue to speak out against the abuse of any and all animals throughout the world.
Golden Age of Cinema Star Brigitte Bardot Joins Anti-Macron Protest Movement https://t.co/sCfkiabiAs
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) November 30, 2018
The controversy is not the first for Bardot, who has been charged with inciting racial hatred in the past for her anti-mass migration comments including in 1998 when she lamented the loss of French identity and tradition due to the increase in the number of mosques in the country “while our church bells fall silent for want of priests.”
Bardot is well-known for her campaigns against animal cruelty and for animal rights which have included calls for video cameras to be installed in French abattoirs to prevent cruelty in which she claimed, “three million animals are sacrificed every day in France in shamefully barbaric and terrifying conditions.”
Most recently, Bardot expressed support for the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vest) movement and has defended against accusations that populist National Rally leader Marine Le Pen is a “fascist.”
“I am very patriotic. I was raised by a father and a grandfather who fought for France and instilled in me a love of my homeland. I am not proud of what France is today… I’m not a ‘facho’ [fascist], any more than Marine Le Pen is,” she said.