On November 19, 2008 the french paper Le Figaro
ran a photo of France's justice minister Rachida Dati on its front page. The photo (top) showed her with her left hand held to the side of her head, a concerned expression on her face.
But the next day, the rival L'Express
revealed that the picture had been doctored to remove a large diamond ring on Dati's hand. The original (bottom) had been taken in June.
Dati had been criticized for her opulent fashion tastes. The erasure of the ring was seen as an attempt by Le Figaro
, a conservative paper, to downplay Dati's frivolous image and present her as a more serious figure. Le Figaro
's photo editor was quoted as saying that they erased the ring because "We didn't want the ring to become the object of controversy". The photo editor emphasized that Miss Dati had "absolutely nothing to do with the decision."
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