Rome, January 22 - Italy's Cassation Court on Tuesday ruled that a teacher who said one of her students was a "donkey, liar and handicapped" had to pay damages of 280 euros to the student. The teacher appealed an earlier, guilty, verdict from a lower court, saying her choice of words was part of "the legitimate exercise of the use of critique" pertaining to teachers. Italy's highest appeals court disagreed and - in its judgment 3197 - said that only the use of the word "donkey" could "reflect criticism of the youth's performance" with the aim of correcting it. Having added that the student also was a "liar, handicapped and a nothing" are "objectively disparaging and indicative of a desire to be offensive," the high court said.
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di Angelo Biscardi